Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Envy Gives Birth to Greed

Courtesy of Mr. Men Wiki
Today, I want to discuss envy and how it can lead to being greedy.  Back in the mid-2000’s I could remember how I would (a) hear of a 63 year old person hitting the lotto for $20 Million; or (b) hear of someone like LeBron James who had only a high school education but had a $90 Million Nike contract before even setting foot on an NBA basketball court; or (c) drive through Northern Raleigh in the Falls Lake area looking at $2 Million dollar homes wondering how they could afford it. Yep, that use to be me and I was convicted by the Holy Spirit about it as well.
Luke 12:15 - And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. (KJV)
Guess what, there is nothing wrong with having Holy ambitions and wanting more for you and your family. But, to want to reach a goal because of envy of another person and their possessions is plain being greedy. There is no other way to put it. You see how the envy part can lead to greed? So, in the examples listed above, I want to go deeper into what I would say.

(a) “Someone 63 years old winning all that money? What are they going to do with it? They are retired and they don't know what to do with all that money.”  I may have been right in that they may not have known what to do with all the money, but guess what? You and a lot of other people would not know what to do with it either! If you cannot manage what you currently have what makes you think God will give you more? Do you know that there is an organization out there that is strictly for people who come into "quick money"? Because of the increasing number of lotto winners people's lives go through dramatic changes and money is the driving force...not God & their morals.  With the increase in divorces, alcohol abuse, etc., these people need help (some not all).

(b) "Man, I can't believe, this kid is straight out of high school and has all that money. That is ridiculous." Now, that sounded about like what I would say. What did I see? I saw myself having a four year college degree and in debt. LeBron got his high school diploma and then became a Nike & NBA celebrity making Millions. However, we do not know the everyday pains of this man's life. With money and fame comes new issues and sometimes the lack of better judgment. It would be wrong to judge and say what you would do when you have no idea the atmosphere in which someone with that amount of money operates.

(c) Riding in North Raleigh, you can see some huge & beautiful houses, but then I use to start wondering, “What in the world do these people do? How can so many people afford housing of this nature when I seem like I live from month to month. I need to find out what they’re doing and do that!” Is that you? Have you ever said that before? But, have you ever wondered how their family life is? Are they putting on a front (a facade) to be with the Jones? You probably would not want to be close to what some people do in order to have what they have. Let's look at more scripture:
Proverbs 15:27 - He that is greedy of gain troubleth his own house; but he that hateth gifts shall live. (KJV)
Have you ever thought about the fact that some people are simply blessed for living in God's will and doing what is best for HIS kingdom? You know, this could be a possible answer for what we see others having. I think we get so wrapped up in the material items and what we want, that we lose focus on our spiritual needs and what is best for us spiritually. If we take care of these needs and live according to HIS Word, the Lord will take care of the rest of your needs.

But wait, Antoine you mentioned something about envy. Never fear, I have a scripture here for that too:
Ecclesiastes 4:4 - Then I saw that all painful effort in labor and all skill in work comes from man’s rivalry with his neighbor. This is also vanity, a vain striving after the wind and a feeding on it. (AMP)
If you want for the wrong reasons then you shall have nothing spiritually. You may acquire what you desired, but if the want wasn't spiritually motivated, the end result may be trouble to you, your family, and others around you. A lot of the times we want more and more and more, without thinking about the additional consequences that come bundled with "more".

In order to grow we must recognize our weaknesses (with the aide of the Holy Spirit of course). There I was, all that time being envious and not even recognizing it. I never considered myself as such but it only takes a small amount of envy to be envious. We have to be able to put ourselves under subjection and begin to improve those areas that need improving. I thank God that He revealed this too me and I hope that this has helped someone else too.

Antoine E. Hall


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