TJ got a new bike Monday night–his first new bike!
Do you remember when you got your first new bike? I’m talking new, not a cleaned up hand-me-down, not a deal from a yard sale. Don’t misread me here. Most of our things were either purchased through Craig’s List or at a garage sale. Sometimes, however, a Daddy wants to give his kid a new bike. As you can imagine, TJ repeatedly thanked me. What brought me even greater joy was what transpired upon our return home.
My other children rejoiced with TJ rather than ask where their new bike was located!
Each was genuinely happy for TJ, knowing it was time for him to receive a much-neeeded upgrade. Their response reminded me of my pastor’s sermon this past Sunday. Wayne is currently preaching through 1 Corinthians 13–“The Love Chapter.” This week he camped on the concept of envy (covetousness/lust). He had some very good (edifying/truthful) things to say on the topic (a link to the sermon is given below). He also shared a helpful quote by Charles Spurgeon. Here it is for your contemplation:
“The cure for envy lies in living under a constant sense of the divine presence, worshiping God and communing with Him all the day long, however long the day may seem. True religion lifts the soul into a higher region, where the judgment becomes more clear and the desires are more elevated. The more of heaven there is in our lives, the less of earth we shall covet. The fear of God casts out envy of men.”
We could meditate upon that paragraph for hours. The line which caught my attention was: “The more of heaven there is in our lives, the less of earth we shall covet.” Indeed! I believe that it could also be stated that the more of heaven there is in our lives, the more joy we will share in the joy of others. In a passage which has sincere love as its theme (Rom. 12:9), the Apostle Paul wrote:
“Rejoice with those who rejoice” (12:15).
Envy kills joy. Covetousness crushes cheer.
Monday night was a happy night in our home. TJ was happy because he got a new bike. Celena, Dayton, and Cascade were happy because he got a new bike. And Mommy and Daddy were happy because–for a brief few minutes–all four of our children were happy.
Joy was present. Envy was absent. God was glorified.
You know–I might need to buy bikes more often!