Envy is the feeling of discontent or covetousness with regard to other’s advantages, success, possessions, achievements, talents, etc. It often leads to other negative feelings like anger, resentment, inadequacy, helplessness and disgust. It is one of the most potent causes of unhappiness.

At its roots, envy is a lack of faith in God. When I am envious, I begin to think that God has not gifted me as much as he has gifted others. Because I seem to lack what others have, I begin to feel inadequate and helpless. I entertain feelings of anger and resentment against God for not being more generous with me. I even start thinking that if I were God, I would have done things differently. The creature that is me tries to re-create my creator who is God in my image and likeness. Such is the evil that is in envy – not so much that I begrudge others for what they have but that I fail to see and believe the goodness that God has showered me with.

I still often have to struggle with feelings of envy. During such moments, I will thank God and praise Him for the good things that happen to others, specially to those I dislike. I will trust in His goodness. I will see and believe the good things He has brought into my life. I will rejoice in the good fortune of others even as I count my own blessings with deep faith and gratitude.

But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”
Matthew 20:1-16

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