I Want What They Have
Have you noticed that happy couples are everywhere? From billboards to movies to lovebirds cuddled up in the halls at school, it seems like everybody has somebody to love.
That can be a mega bummer for girls who don't have a boyfriend or have chosen to wait on God's timing for romance.
In fact, we know that some of you have felt that sting because you've told us so.
"I have been very lonely lately as all my friends ‘pair up' and start dating. It is very hard to be the only one without a boyfriend, and at times I wish I had one."
"I've never actually had a real boyfriend either. Sometimes it's really hard for me and other times it's not. All my friends have boyfriends or some guy they're obsessed with . . . except me, and usually it doesn't affect me unless I'm with them all."
"I have always felt left out because even my closest friends have boyfriends, and I feel like no guy is even looking at me . . . and it's hard being left out and alone."
We hear you. I think every girl has felt a tinge of longing after being around loving couples or watching a great romance unfold on the big screen. But it isn't always harmless to want what others have in the area of romance. In fact, I think there are times when dwelling on the romances of others leads us into two dangerous territories-jealousy and covetousness.
Romans 13:12–14 says, "The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh."
This passage lists jealousy as a "deed of darkness." In other words it's not okay for those of us who have been called to show the light of Christ to this dark world (Matthew 5:14).
Jealousy's ugly cousin is covetousness. That's a big word that simply means wanting what others have. Avoiding covetousness is of such important to the Lord that He included it in the Ten Commandments.
Exodus 20:17 says, "You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor."?
God's Word doesn't allow us to dwell on wanting what others have. That includes romance. Why does God warn so strongly against it? Because longing for what others have can eat us up inside and distract us from God's standards. So many of you have shared with us that you have trouble sticking to God's call to purity simply because you of the romance you see on television, movies, and the lives of your friends. That's why longing for others' lives is a big deal and why I want to encourage you to make a conscious effort not to covet, especially in the area of love.
Are there specific situations that make you long for love more strongly (certain movies, shows, or relationships you see your friends having)? What can you do to re-train your thoughts away from jealousy and covetousness and toward purity and gratitude?