Heart Check Part 2 - Proverbs 14:30March 23, 2013
In part 1 we looked at how anger is a dangerous emotion and can play a large part in damaging your walk with God, not to mention your witness to the hockey world.Today, we will explore anger's ugly cousin: ENVY.Let's start part 2 by reading Proverbs 14:30:A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot.We don't know about you, but bones rotting does not really jump to the top of our list of things that would be good for a hockey player. Now, we are pretty sure this verse is using strong words as a tool to make a strong point, but the truth underneath the words still stands. Envy has the distinct characteristic of decaying not just bones, but your soul. It is like a virus. Once planted it slowly eats away at your heart. Slowly but surely, envy causes a root of bitterness to spring up within your heart totally changing the way you look at and interact with the world. Before you know it, you are rotting from the inside out.
What does it look like?Maybe some of you are wondering what envy looks like. Here is how Webster's dictionary sums up envy: painful or resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another joined with a desire to possess the same advantage. Envy is wanting something another person has. It is looking outside ourselves at the world around us and saying, "I wish I had X because then I would be Y." It is indeed a painful and resentful awareness of the things we don't have but wish we did. Here are a few (just a few) of the many concrete hockey examples of envy:
Envy can come in many forms, from big things to small things. We have already seen how dangerous it can be (think rotting bones). Now, let's look at a few things we can do to prevent it moving into our hearts and minds.How do we guard against Envy?
- You begin to resent a teammate because they are having a great season and you are not
- You look across the bench at the 1st place team and tell yourself if you were only on that team things would be different
- You stare longingly at all the new equipment others around you wear and fail to appreciate the equipment you do have
- You resent the other coach who seems to get all the great players, and say....."if only I had...."
1. Remember the rotting bonesThe book of Proverbs uses some pretty crazy language, but this language is ultimately for our good. Nobody wants rotting bones. NOBODY. By remembering verses like Proverbs 14:30, we have a clear picture of the end result of envy. Obviously, we don't want to not do something simply because we are scared of the consequences. Iinstead, we want to do things because we actually long to do the most God honoring action. However, we know that sometimes thinking about the consequences is the best guard against doing something we shouldn't do. So, when you are faced with envy.....remember the rotting bones.2. Practice PeacePracticing Peace is very hard to do. It's not really something you can always physically see or feel. But, it is something you can actively try to practice in your daily life. For instance, how often have you spent 10 minutes of your day thinking about all the things you have in your life which many people in the world do not? When was the last time you thought about the fact that you have the best gift from God....His son Jesus Christ? How much time are you spending every day reading God's word or in prayer?You see, practicing peace is really getting close to God because He is the ultimate giver of our Peace. So, as Proverbs 14:30 states, "A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh", let's all try to work hard for that tranquil heart.Closing QuestionsWhat are some things you have been envious of lately?How can you guard against envy in your life?