The World Is Not Pie: Dealing with Envy

Last week while scrolling through Instagram I noticed these bitter feelings and thoughts coming into my mind. There were some things I saw that I felt was unfair. Things were happening for other people, good things, but I felt like they should be happening to me. It felt like their opportunities were taking away from my opportunities. Or in my naturally competitive spirit, I almost felt challenged by other people, but not in a positive way. Whether the challenging was going on or not, it seemed that way to me. I voiced it to John Luke one day and told him about different situations that I felt were unfair and I was on the losing end.

The next day as I was having my quiet time I was thinking about that bitter feeling. Once I started to think about it, I realized that had been going on for a while. You see, good things were happening to others, and I felt like I had just been forgotten about. I was feeling this strongly lately and I saw this jealous and envious spirit coming up in me. It was easy to feel that way and justify those feelings, but I didn’t like that growing in me. It didn’t align with Christ’s life. It was ugly and making me feel ugly on this inside. I wrote down a prayer in my journal that day and this was a section of it:

“God, help me do away with envy and jealousy and pride. Show me how to get rid of it and to be able to full-out love others and be happy for them.”

I kept this prayer private and went on about my day. Later that day John Luke and I were out running errands together. He always listens to Rob Bell podcasts when he drives. Sometimes I listen, sometimes I don’t really pay attention. Honestly that day I wasn’t really paying attention. Until I heard him say the words jealousy and envy. I immediately thought of my prayer and my curiosity peaked. He was speaking about how he deals with jealousy and envy. The first things that struck me were when he said:

“When I realize I am having feelings of envy or jealousy I imagine God saying, ‘Are you envious because I am generous?'”

Wow.

But the second thing struck me even more. He said:

“The world is not pie.”

He continued on and this was what he was getting at…

Guys we serve a God who is INFINITE. He literally has no boundaries. Only when something has boundaries can it be split up. So the opposite of that means when something does NOT have boundaries it CANNOT be split up. We cannot divide the divine. When we see the world with boundaries we tend to have this scarcity mentality and it’s a lot like pie. With pie there are only a certain amount of pieces, meaning only a certain amount of people will get a piece. This is totally how I naturally see things wether I always realize it or not- if something good happens to someone else, that takes away from me. But this isn’t truth. We serve an infinite God who cannot be divided because He has no boundaries. Love, joy…they are things with no boundaries.

So now whenever I feel envy or jealousy starting to creep up I call to mind two things:

1. God is being generous to them.

2. The world is not pie.

When I remind myself of these two things, its much easier to genuinely be happy for someone else. Someone else’s good doesn’t take away from me at all. They are receiving a blessing from God, and I have confidence that God knows best and does best. He’s already been generous enough to me and anyone else honestly by giving us His Son. He’s got plans for each of us and will equip us for those and lead us into those. His timing is perfect and so are His plans.

I also hope this encourages you to ask God to help you with things. We’re all struggling with things and we don’t have to try and hide it from Him or disguise it as something else. He already knows we’re struggling. I think He’s just waiting for us to ask Him for help. He wants to step in to teach us and aid us. It doesn’t have to be this elaborate prayer or ask. It can be as simple as

“God, I am struggling with ________. Will you show me how to fight it off and get rid of it?

He may speak to you audibly, he may send you a friend or random person to speak into you, or He may even answer your prayer in a podcast on your way to Target. Just keep your ears open and ready to receive it. He often speaks in a still, small voice.

Thanks @31bits for the cutest picnic basket! Love this company and the good they are doing in the world.

boots // jeans (if not exact, same style and brand, and on sale)// similar top

 

 

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16 comments so far.

16 responses to “The World Is Not Pie: Dealing with Envy”

  1. Ivey says:

    Oh wow…. when you mentioned in this post that God will send someone to you for encouragement, you are that person for me at this moment. I was just having a perfectly normal evening at home folding laundry and I started feeling some jealous and envious thoughts. They were super out of the blue and its not something I typically experience. Then I read your post about 15 minutes later… Thank you for following your heart amd allowing God to use you to reach other people! God bless you and your journey.
    ~Ivey

  2. Ella Peters says:

    I absolutely love this. I’ve definitely related a lot to these feelings the last few weeks without even realizing it fully. Thanks for your encouraging words πŸ™‚

  3. Morgan says:

    Wow!! This is EXACTLY what I needed to hear!!

  4. Brianna says:

    What was the name of the podcast?

  5. Maddie Jones says:

    Wow, thank you for this.

  6. Heather B. says:

    This is something I have been struggling with myself. I always see my friends going out and doing so many amazing things in the world and I get jealous. I want so badly to be a part of it all and sometimes, instead of just living the life God blessed me with, I am daydreaming about someone else’s… I really think I needed to see this blog today, thank you so much for this πŸ’˜

  7. Rachael says:

    Totally something I am working on too! I like your advice to think of those 2 things, only I think I will shorten “God is being generous to them” to “God is generous” … it’s all about who God is rather than other people or even the “what” it is He is doing.

    Also I love your transparency/vulnerability here as well as how you modeled what to do when we struggle with something like this, and that includes sharing with others and praying about it. When you share things you always do it in such a wise way, even the times where you are still working through things.

  8. Allisan Matthews says:

    THIS!!

  9. Paloma says:

    I’m in the same boat! Thank you for sharing and your encouragement. I needed to hear this.

  10. Maisie Dunning says:

    MARY KATE! This was needed so much! I have been feeling like this for a while, and it has changed my view! Thank you for being so obedient and brave enough to share your real and raw stories! Literally changing hearts over the globe! Thank you <3

  11. Reese F. says:

    I needed to read this so bad.

  12. Mom says:

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  13. Paula says:

    I so needed to read this today! Thank you for sharing β™₯️

  14. Elyse says:

    Mary Kate,
    You are wise beyond your years. Thank you for being God’s instrument on earth. That is how He works. He could show us Himself, but instead He chose you to lead by example. Thank you for saying yes! We are all the better for it! Your vulnerability is beautiful – a true gift…God bless!

  15. Olivai says:

    I needed this, right this second! Perfect timing. Thank you for being such a light for other young women.

  16. Hannah Bengtson says:

    You are such an encouragement! This is so true! Thank you so much for sharing your heart and for talking about sin! This is such a challenge for me. I struggle with this so badly and just forget all that God has given me. Thank you so much.

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