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shalome7 29.06.08 - 08:24pm

Have you ever been envious? Envious of someone's job, house, money, marriage? Many of us have this idea that we deserve to have something, and when we don't get it we pout. This is envy, it's being covetous, it's sin, and it's ugly. But what do we do to rid ourselves of this?
When we allow envy to creep into our lives we allow the envy monster, satan, to have his way. One pitfall singles must avoid is having envy toward those who are married.
A preacher once said, ''To be envious is to doubt GOD's love for you and HIS sovereignty in your life.'' Wow! To believe the lie that married people are more special to GOD than single people is to not trust HIS love. Just because you are single does not mean GOD loves you any less than HE loves your married friends. GOD loves you the same. This is a common lie satan loves to throw our way to take our focus and trust off the FATHER.

Throughout the BIBLE envy and covetousness are on the lists of behaviours of the ungodly and those who will not inherit the kingdom.

For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of CHRIST and GOD (Ephesians 5:5 emphasis added).

GOD desires us to be content with the path HE has marked out for us.
A key to having a deep personal relationship with GOD is contentment. Why? Easy. When you are fully content, you say that you are 100 percent, totally willing to accept whatever GOD wants to throw your way-the good, the bad, and the ugly. Look at JESUS' heart of contentment toward the FATHER:

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in CHRIST JESUS, who, although HE existed in the form of GOD, did not regard equality with GOD a thing to be grasped, but emptied HIMSELF, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, HE humbled HIMSELF by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross (Philippians 2:5-8).

venecia7 29.06.08 - 10:06pm

Once you fully empty yourself of self, you take on the attitude of CHRIST JESUS. HE may have wanted the ''cup'' of suffering to be taken from HIM (Matthew 26:39), but HE went all the way to death to prove HIS trust in the FATHER's plans.
Many of us are familiar with Philippians 4:11, in which Paul tells us how he has ''learned to be content in whatever cir tance.'' Notice the word ''learned.'' He did not just-poof-understand contentment. He learned contentment in GOD's private classroom of life. When Paul released what he wanted and was shipwrecked, beaten, and jailed all for the sake of CHRIST, contentment found him. He learned to release his will, to die to his desires and live for CHRIST. ''For me to live is CHRIST, and to die is gain'' (Philippians 1:21). Paul knew death to self was truly living for CHRIST.
We cannot have godliness without contentment. ''But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment'' (1Timothy 6:6). The rich man in Luke 12 was not content with what he had. He planned to build more barns and have good years ahead of him. Yet, that very night GOD required his soul. How much could he have done for the LORD had he found contentment with what he had? Unfortunately, we will never know. What a regretful statement. Often many of us are not content with our lot. When we have discontentment we may be unable to see what GOD would want for us. This self focus can take away blessings from GOD.
Who are we to think we deserve marriage anyway? Actually, we don't deserve anything. GOD sent HIS SON to die on the cross so that we have hope of eternal life. We must find contentment in that. Yes, all we need or want should be wrapped up in the fact the HEAVENLY FATHER provided a way to have eternal life with HIM. We must repent of thinking that this season of our life is too hard, or that anything in life is too difficult. GOD will not give you more than you can handle (1 Corinthians 10:13, Philippians 4:13). GOD calls us to lay aside foolish and


venecia7 29.06.08 - 10:43pm

selfish thoughts, to press on, to gird up our loins, push through and fight the good fight. GOD desires you to find contentment in HIM alone. Once you come to a place where you lay aside your expectations of GOD, then contentment will find you.
When one does not rid their heart of discontentment before marriage, discontentment will creep up within marriage. When one looks to anything but GOD to bring happiness, HE will never allow that other thing to bring satisfaction. One key piece of advice often given to people is make sure you marry someone who is content with the LORD alone. Someone who enters into a marriage without being content with GOD alone may have a tendency to look to his or her mate as a ''saviour.'' That pressure on the ''saviour'' could become overwhelming.
There was a couple who found the idea of marriage so alluring that they rushed into it. The godly advice they received before marriage was to wait and slow down. Once married, they looked to each other for deep satisfaction. They used each other as idols. A few years later they divorced.
If you want to find someone who is content, you must also have contentment with CHRIST during your years as a single. But don't try to reach contentment to fool GOD so HE will give you a mate. You'll end up fooling yourself! On the other hand, once you've reached contentment GOD will not automatically say, ''Okay, you're finally content, now I will give you a mate.''
Also being content with your singleness does not necessarily mean that GOD has blessed you with the gift of singleness either. Do not let contentment scare you. Making peace with singleness does not equal a life with no possibility for marriage. Once you achieve true contentment with our LORD and SAVIOUR, peace will follow.
What it boils down to is fear. Do you fear being single the rest of your life? Or do you fear being in a marriage not ordained by GOD? If the fear of being single is greater than the fear of being in the wrong marriage, problems will occur.


venecia7 29.06.08 - 11:09pm

These can be called hysterical fears. In 1Peter 3:1-7, Peter addresses wives. He shares what women should strive for: chaste and respectful behaviour (vs. 2), external beauty that reflects the internal beauty of a quiet and gentle spirit (vs. 3-4), and adornment through submission to GOD. In verse 6 it states we will become Sarah's (Abraham's wife) children, ''if you do what is right without being frightened by fear''. We will achieve these godly qualities, if we are not overcome by our hysterical fears.
Norm Wakefield stated in his book, Equipped to Love, ''Whenever someone looks to anything or anyone rather than GOD as the source of all things, he commits the sin of idolatry. This may sound strange, but it's true. Here is a good definition of idolatry: looking to any person, object or idea to supply what only GOD can supply.'' We must examine things in our lives that may be idols. Could it be the idea of marriage? Or could it be the ''friend'' you have?
Recently, on Christian talk radio, a counselor was helping people with their marital problems. This woman caller was desperate for answers and a quick fix for her persistent problem. She'd been married for ten years. She had befriended Christian man on the Internet. Since she was not receiving emotional support from her husband she turned to her computer friend. The emotions she needed from him prompted him to want a break in their relationship. This thought petrified her. She said. ''I feel compelled to talk to him. I cant stop.'' She was looking for a ''saviour'' of her emotions, someone to fill in the gaps that only GOD could. This man had become an idol in her life. Remember the term for an idol, ''anything you look to for something that only GOD can give you.'' She did not go into depth on the history of her marriage, but it can almost be guaranteed that during the start of her marriage she relied on her husband for the same things she wanted from this internet friend. She needed to go to her heavenly FATHER for her emotional


venecia7 30.06.08 - 01:23am

support and be content with HIM.
Now, how does this relate to us? When discontentment is felt in life, when one does not find true contentment with GOD alone, problems can easily occur. Ask GOD to point out areas in your life where you are not content, then ask HIM to help you be satisfied with HIS plan. HE will begin to reveal areas where you are not fully in his will. Once this lesson is learned, you may need to lean on GOD ''the EDUCATOR'' to continue to keep you reminded of HIS instructions.
If you are married, where do you find your satisfaction? Are you longing for your spouse to fill your empty heart? It will never happen. Only GOD can fill this hole in your heart. HE designed it that way. Your husband has not been created to make you happy. Your wife has not been created to always satisfy you. Look to GOD to fill this area of your life. Trust HIM to take care of your marriage. Be content with where you are in life. As difficult as marriage can be, continue to draw near to GOD. GOD can use another person, your mate perhaps, to contribute to your happiness and satisfaction, but remember it ultimately comes from GOD and HE deserves the glory.
A newly married female explained this point quite well.

~ I have learned that marriage does not quell my desires for stability or joy. But that is not a dig on marriage, or mine in particular, it is just to say that the LORD is supreme and HIS ways are to be desired above all. Because, let me tell you, with the HOLY SPIRIT in you, you will not be satisfied even in a great marriage unless you are growing in your relationship with JESUS. HE will not let you be happy with things of this earth. Now that I've led you to believe that my marriage is not satisfying all my desires.......it is truly the most amazing blessing straight from heaven ('cause I could never do anything so perfect). He is so pure and unblemished and genuine and desiring to please me.

venecia7 30.06.08 - 09:47am

She definately understands that marriage is not the answer to unending joy, but is truly a blessing from GOD. She found contentment with CHRIST alone before marriage, and sees her relationship with HIM as crucial after marriage. She knows HIS plan is best.
We have a tendency to not trust in GOD's plan, and that can cause envy or discontentment. However, let us look at some verses about GOD's ways compared to our ways.

''For MY thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways MY ways,'' declares the LORD. ''For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are MY ways higher than your ways and MY thoughts than your thoughts'' (Isaiah 55:8-9).

Just as you do not know the path of wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of GOD who makes all things (Ecclesiastes 11:5).

The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD (Proverbs 16:1).

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD. (Jeremiah 29:11).

There are many more verses that speak about how GOD will direct us. We must trust HIM. At first we may not understand what GOD is doing. As David said in Psalm 139:6, ''Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high I cannot attain to it.'' He was comfortable knowing that he did not know.
There may come a time when we will look back on our single years and see GOD's fingerprints everywhere. The pain, trials, and struggles become clear when you set envy aside. You will see how the ups and downs of life are to be dealt with head on, free from envy.
You've heard ''hindsight is twenty-twenty.'' Maybe the children of Israel coined that phrase. Did they understand what GOD was going to do when they stood at the Red Sea with their enemies behind them? No. Did they understand or know where their food, water, and provision for their basic needs would come from? No. Did they understand what GOD did when HE said the land HE gave to them was


venecia7 30.06.08 - 10:26am

filled with giants? No. They continued in their discontentment and the cost became deadly.
The Israelites rebelled against GOD over and over in the desert, and often we do the same thing. The correlation between the children of Israel and us is clear: they were in bondage to the Egyptians, we are in bondage to believing that marriage is going to save us from this state of discontented singleness. GOD performed a grand exodus to save the Israelites from slavery; GOD sent HIS SON to save us from slavery. HE led the Israelites through the desert of testing to worship and serve HIM there; HE wants us to come through the desert of testing to see if we trust HIM. Then HE allowed the Israelites to enter the Promised Land; and, if you allow GOD to take you through the arid desert of trials, you will come through trusting and obeying HIM. The Promised land is not marriage, but rather a place of knowing that you are in the FATHER's hands and that you will not be single a day longer than HE plans for you.
A woman took an inventory of how many single friends she has. She found that there was not many left. Many have married and begun to have children. She and many of those girlfriends would sit around and talk about marriage and worry about when or if they were going to get married. They stirred the cauldron of hysterical fears all the way to the boiling point. Now many of them are married. What a waste of mental energy they spent on worry!
When a thought of discontentment, envy, or lack of trust comes into your head, pray, ''Take captive every thought to the obedience of JESUS CHRIST'' (2Corinthians 10:5). Let the HOLY SPIRIT be your teacher (John 14:26). Let HIM provide the learning environment. The pain from this hot desert is HIS hand conforming you to HIS likeness.
Also, read verses of GOD's goodness and HIS promises for your life. Let these awesome promises from the FATHER comfort you:

''Bring the whole tithe into MY storehouse....'' says the LORD, ''see if I will not open for you

venecia7 30.06.08 - 10:33am

the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows (Malachi 3:10). (Maybe your tithe in this case would be waiting patiently for GOD's time.)

And the peace of GOD, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in CHRIST JESUS (Philippians 4:7).

And the LORD will continually guide you, and satisfy your desire in scorched places, and give strength to your bones; and you will be like a watered garden (Isaiah 58:11).

And my GOD will supply all your needs according to HIS riches in glory in CHRIST JESUS (Philippians 4:19).

The LORD will give strength to HIS people; the LORD will bless HIS people with peace (Psalm 29:11).

Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary (Isaiah 40:31).

Can you understand that being envious and not trusting HIM can create a wall between you and the FATHER? Does it excite you to be at a place of peace about your singleness? Our GOD is very giving, and we have no business seeking to please our wills (flesh). Only HE can satisfy the deepest longings of our souls. Throw off your envy and discontentment, fall on your knees, and trust in an all-loving, all-powerful, completely organized and faithful GOD.

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