June 25 Envy and Strife

scripture reading: Luke 10:38–42
key verse: Philippians 3:10

That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death.

Martha had chosen to prepare the evening meal. No one forced her to do it. In fact, if we examined the situation, we would find that Martha really didn’t mind the work. She loved receiving praise for her cooking.

Yet here was the scenario: Jesus was in the front room of the house talking to those gathered near Him. Martha was rushing around the cooking area in the back of the house. All was fine until she discovered her sister was missing. A quick check of the courtyard provided no clue to Mary’s whereabouts. With her jaw set to reprove her sister, Martha stormed by the doorway to the front room.

When she spotted Mary sitting near the feet of Jesus, envy and jealousy took control of Martha’s heart: “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me” (Luke 10:40 nasb).

All of us have fought similar feelings. While God understands our weaknesses, jealousy is intolerable to Him. Why? For one, it proves that we are more interested in taking care of ourselves than in taking care of our love relationship with Him. Jesus told Martha, “Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:42 nasb).

Make every effort to rid your life of envy and strife. Let God bless you in the way He has chosen. Set the focus of your heart on Him, and rejoice that He greatly loves you.

Lord, remove envy and strife from my life. I focus my heart on You today. I choose the good part. Release me from the tyranny of the urgent to do the truly important.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1998). Enter His gates: a daily devotional. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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