With the holidays fast approaching, it’s the perfect time to discuss jealousy, it’s a tricky emotion to pinpoint when it involves your kids or family spending time with the other person. But this is often the hidden emotion behind all the turmoil and pain.
They have your spouse, your seat at the table, in-laws, and now your kids!
Jealousy feels like betrayal and abandonment. And those two emotions combined with a whole lot of anger will make you say and do things that you will later regret because jealousy pushes people away.
This can lead to huge amounts of feeling sorry for yourself as you put all the focus and blame on others.
Jealousy will make you act obsessed. Calling your child over and over to ask about the dinner with the other person. Then feeling even more hurt when they don’t pick up. When they do, you will lash out and unleash all that pain onto them. Trying to make them feel guilty for making you jealous.
Jealousy will put all sorts of thoughts in your head how now they are a new family and they have replaced you, even prefer the other person over you.
Jealousy will help your imagination. Make you believe the other person is thinking about you, relishing over how they now have your family and you are out in the cold.
Jealousy makes you feel like it’s a competition and you are losing, but worse, they are winning and getting all the prizes.
When left unchecked and unattended jealousy can escalate into a murderous spirit. Look at Cain and Able in Genesis 4.
So how do you cope with feelings of jealousy?
First, recognize what it is. And second, relate to God!
He is a jealous God. He also doesn’t like someone or something replacing Him at the seat reserved for Him.
You must worship no other gods, for the LORD, whose very name is Jealous, is a God who is jealous about his relationship with you. Exodus 34:14 NLT
Jealousy is natural. You just have to be careful to not lash out, react irrational and make someone feel bad for your jealousy.Be honest with yourself, God and others. Letting them know you are jealous and trying to manage it with prayer and confession.
Don’t let jealousy cross the line. Don’t use it to guilt others or make you obsessed with the actions of others. Learn how to stop intrusive lies and irrational thinking. Learn the patterns of self-pity.
Jealousy alone is manageable, especially when you take it to prayer and apply the Word. It’s when you heap all those other things into it and allow it to run free that it becomes the free eyes monster it’s capable of becoming.
Standing with you,
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