Hidden Envy

Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
Galatians 5:26

According to the journal Science Advances, researchers in Spain conducted a study of the personality types of 540 people and grouped them into four categories: optimistic, pessimistic, trusting, and envious. The first three groups represented sixty percent of the total, and another ten percent were impossible to define. The remainder, the largest single group, was made up of people whose personalities were dominated by envy, though they usually didn’t recognize it.

We all battle envy, of course, but we often don’t realize how much we’re motivated by silent contests with those around us. We quietly compete to get the upper hand, to be noticed, to have our way, and to feed our ego—allow without realizing it.

The Bible’s medicine for the heart disease of envy is christly love. Envy is an emotion that devalues the importance of loving others. Love is much stronger than envy. The best way to counteract envy is to make up our minds to love others. When we love someone, we want the best for him or her. Suddenly it’s not all about us, it’s about how we can help others succeed.

Whenever you attempt a good work you will find other men doing the same kind of work, and probably doing it better. Envy them not.

Henry Drummond, in The Greatest Thing in the World


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