Beyond All Boundaries

It is a wintry Saturday morning, and I’m growing increasingly congested. I don’t feel like doing much except for making breakfast and sitting with my husband.



After scrambled eggs and toast, I drag a box of tissues over to the couch where we open our Bibles. And mid a nose-blowing, sluggish Saturday morning, the Holy Spirit  speaks. Envy, Proverbs says, is rottenness to the bones.


Hmm. I grab the new Oxford English Dictionary that has recently arrived in the mail  from Barnes and Noble. Envy, it says, is a discontented longing aroused by someone else’s possessions or qualities.


The Holy Spirit begins to remind me of moments I’ve felt discontent with myself, my circumstances, and my so-called lot in life. He links those times with those in which I’ve noted someone’s appearance, ministry, or situation and envied it.


Oh Lord, forgive me.


And I see something else: envy blocks faith. It resists resilience. How can I take an offensive, optimistic stance of faith toward my life, my calling, and my goals when I’m focusing on everything I seem to lack?


Envy is really looking at my life through the box of someone else’s. And faith doesn’t put boxes and boundaries around God. Faith is, in fact, part of the boundary line King David said had fallen to him in pleasant places—part of the portion given by a God who maintained his lot in life (see Psalm 16:5-6).


And that God only does things exceedingly abundantly beyond all the boundaries of my own imagination.


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