“For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh
and behaving only in a human way?”
1 Corinthians 3:3
Christian women should be the sweetest people on the planet. But you know as well as I do that the sad truth is…
In fact, oftentimes, we’re downright nasty toward each other. Catty is the term my mom used to describe the behavior I have in mind—cold, unkind, gossiping, subtly insulting, competitive, cliquish.
Identifying The Reason for the Claws
Although I wish I could say I’ve only observed such undesirable behavior in others, I’m ashamed to admit that I’m capable of batting my claws with the best of them (figuratively speaking, of course). When I examine my motives to understand why I’m prone to view my sisters in Christ as competitors instead of as companions in my walk with the Lord, what I often find is that my green eyes are to blame.
In other words, I’m jealous—I want what they have, and I want it so badly that I’ll allow myself to sin against them in response.
Are you prone to act like a Green-Eyed Girl as well? Here’s a quiz to help you discover the answer…
She’s getting married and you’re not. Do you:
A. Go to the wedding
B. Sit home watching romantic chick-flicks
She’s having a baby, but you can’t get pregnant. Will you:
A. Offer to help decorate for her baby shower
B. Trash the invitation and make sure you’re busy that day
She gets asked to lead the Ladies Bible Study instead of you. Do you:
A. Offer to lend some of your Bible study resources to help her prepare
B. Let others know how surprised you are that she would be chosen
Her home always appears immaculate. When you visit, do you:
A. Ask her to share her housekeeping tips
B. Search diligently for any flaws you can find
Her seemingly perfect children finally melt down in public. Do you:
A. Feel compassion for her
B. Secretly rejoice inside that you were there to see it
She looks beautiful, as always. Do you:
A. Compliment her on her taste in clothing
B. Zip your lip; you’re sure she already has a big head
Everything she cooks tastes delicious. Do you:
A. Ask if she’d mind sharing recipes to help you improve your cooking
B. Vow that she’ll never set foot in your house for a meal
Her husband often brings her flowers, just because. You see them and:
A. Feel happy to think that she is so well loved
B. Imagine that he were your husband instead
So how’d you do? Do you have more in common with the Gracious Woman reflected in choice A or the Green-Eyed Girl of option B?
Getting Rid of the Green-Eyed Monster
Although issues like jealousy, envy, and covetousness can produce complex consequences in our lives (James 3:16; 4:1-3), the solution to overcoming these sins is really quite simple. We need gratitude and we need love.
First, if you’re truly grateful for the undeserved blessings God daily pours out in your life, there will be no space in your heart for jealousy to grow. Gratitude will choke it out.
Second, if you truly love other women like you love yourself, you’ll want their children to behave, their husbands to be loving, their ministries to succeed, and their cooking to taste great. When your concern is for their good, rather than your own, you’ll be free to rejoice when they rejoice (Rom. 12:15) instead of comparing your life to theirs to see how it measures up.
Bearing the Family Resemblance
What will it be, ladies? Green eyes or gratitude and love? The change won’t occur easily or instantaneously, but there’s really only one option for sisters within the family of God.
Let’s begin changing the way we look at one another today.