“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud” (1 Corinthians 13:4).
Sometimes we make friends with people who share similar problems. People who watch each other’s children grow up and suffer through economic difficulties together share what they have. They become close to one another.
Sadly, sometimes when the hard times disappear for one of the parties, the friendship disappears as well. For instance, could two sisters remain devoted if only one of them becomes rich? Can two children, who grew up together, stay close if one of them is successful and the other is not?
Envy often destroys relationships in situations like these.
I knew two women who were very close friends. Both were married, had little girls, lived in the same town and attended the same organizations. One had a lot of money, the other did not.
The time came when the wealthy woman’s husband built her a beautiful house. I wondered how the poor woman would feel—her home was very small and unattractive. I was so proud when I realized that the poorer woman did not envy her friend, but instead was happy for her. She even helped her move in to the new house. She rejoiced with her friend.
That is what love should be like. In the Bible, Paul says firmly that envy cannot be a part of love. Envy is an evil that will destroy friendship and sever families.
When your friend or sister gets something nice, be glad for her. Your relationship is far more precious than any material things.
Kimberly Snider is a missionary to the Philippines.
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