Are you able to feel truly happy for others?

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.
— Romans 12:15

So, recently, a lot of friends and acquaintances of mine have been "coming into their miracle" so to speak. Whether they are fantastic new jobs, kids, relationships, weddings, engagements, business launches or financial turn around, social media has kept me informed about the amazing things that have been coming their way. Admittedly, while I am typically quite genuinely happy for people and their blessings or accomplishments, I've really been struggling with feeling the urge to compare myself to others in the recent past, and to therefore feel  a tad "hater-ish".

You see, there are projects that I am working on, and desires that I have that God hasn't fulfilled yet, and sometimes I can't help but feel that my efforts are in vain, or that God is blessing every one BUT ME. When I allow these feelings and thoughts to take root and dominate my mind, it becomes really difficult to have positive feelings about other people's joys.

Can anyone relate?

Navigating the issues of the heart is really about perspective. The above verses remind me that we should fully empathize with one another in joy, or in pain. This is largely because, outside of the fact that it's just a loving thing to do, everything in life happens in its own time (Read Ecclesiastes 3). When the Bible describes Jesus' life, the phrases " in the fullness of time" or  "His time had not yet come"are used to track the chronology of Jesus' life events. These phrases show me a divine perspective: that it is ok to fully celebrate the happiness and the joys of others because they are in their season of fulfillment and your season of fulfillment will come in its due time. This takes comparison out of the way because life is not a race with others, it is a race against distraction from Christ and we each have our individual course to run.

If you are looking forward to things that seem to be delayed in your life, do not entertain the urge to compare or contrast your life to other people's and feel inferior or left behind. Conversely, when you are prospering, do not consider that you did something to deserve your happiness above others. Both jealousy and pride are toxic emotions, and they are both rooted and reinforced by selfishness. Instead, allow the Holy Spirit to comfort you ( as He is doing with me) and recognize that God takes us all through seasons, and in every case, in his timing, your season will come.

Liselle Coker1 Comment