Love is not jealous jeal·ous -ˈjeləs/ adjective – feeling or showing envy of someone or their achievements and advantages, feeling or showing suspicion of someone’s unfaithfulness in a relationship, fiercely protective or vigilant of one’s rights or possessions.
I’m pretty sure I made myself a pro at this one! I learned rather quickly (but not quickly enough) that love is NOT jealous. When my husband (Reese) and I were first married I had so much jealousy in me I’m surprised I had room for any love!
I was jealous when he got called into full time MINISTRY and was able to quit his other job while I was still working at an office. I was jealous of women who were talented enough to be up on stage with him during WORSHIP. Yep, I said it…worship. I was jealous of any time he was away from home at all which was pretty much just at the CHURCH or for the church. Sounds like a straight out ploy of the devil, don’t ya think? Or was it just a lack of self confidence? I was making myself miserable because of jealousy. I loved my husband dearly, but wasn’t expressing it to him at all because I was too busy wanting things that didn’t belong to me.
I don’t know exactly when things changed for me in that area but I know how. I asked God to search my heart and point out anything in me that was offensive to Him. Jealousy was revealed rather quickly. I began asking God what my purpose was. He showed me first of all, that I am in the full time ministry as well and I am to serve beside my husband. I was reminded that God handpicked my workplace out for me and that I was to be a light there for Him. I had no idea that once that purpose was fulfilled He would allow me to work from home and be our children’s teacher, making that part of my full time ministry as well.
My eyes were opened up more and more as God began revealing the jealousy in my heart. The women up on stage, they were using their talents to worship God and I wanted it so I could be closer to my husband! How ignorant is that? On top of that, jealousy was blinding me of my own gifts and talents. (I would discover those later) but for now, I was free to praise and worship God with a loving heart again.
The next thing I learned was that Reese’s time away from us was spent serving God…so really…I was jealous of God! God, the One who GAVE me my husband. How could I not be willing to share him? Jealousy caused me to make my husband feel bad when he would leave for conferences or worship events or youth functions, etc. He wasn’t even able to fully focus on what God wanted from him because of MY jealousy. Once I saw this for what it was, my heart began to change. Praise God my husband was patient with me during this time and still is.
I’m not saying I’ve perfected this, but I can definitely recognize it quicker and shut it down faster. Just this past weekend he has been at a men’s retreat that I was actually excited for him to go on! And I’ve also encouraged him to sign up for another one next year. He will actually be going to one of my favorite places in the country but instead of being jealous, I’m praying about how God is going to move in his life and ours because of it.
Getting rid of jealousy has caused me to have more love for other people, my husband, myself, my children, and my God. Love is NOT jealous.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous… 1 Corinthians 13:4