Transformed – teen devotion – May 17, 2020

A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.
Proverbs 14:30

Confronting monsters: Envy

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve seen my iPhone usage soar through the roof. I wish I could go back and see what it was like before COVID-19, but now I look at my usage, and last week, I spent nearly 3.5 hours daily on my iPhone. It wasn’t all for work. I’m not proud of that, just aware of my own weakness.

I’m not saying that being on your phone is bad, but it might be bad for you. As you scroll through Facebook, Instagram, you see the filtered life and emotions of other people. As you flip through Snapchat or TikTok, you get glimpse of other people’s lives, and usually only the best parts.

I can only speak for myself. I do not share the pictures of a struggle. But I will share images of triumph. I only post the best pictures because I want to look good. I share a filtered life.

What feelings fill your heart and mind when you see the filtered pictures of everyone else’s lives? What thoughts do you have as you watch the videos or follow the stories people post?

Their filtered lives can look so much better than your own. A better house. A better look. A better life. Following their story, it may seem like they’re always doing bigger, better things than you. Right now, you might just be getting by, but they seem to be thriving.

Here comes the monster: Envy and jealousy. Envy will rot your bones. Jealousy will consume you. The more you think about their life, the more your life will seem to stink. The more you look at the things they have, the more you will want their life. Envy is a monster that will never be satisfied.

So, put down the phone. Stop scrolling. Delete the app. Take a social media break. Instead, get out a pad of paper and make a list of how your God is blessing your right now.

Make a list of the people in your life who are there for you. Make a list of the blessings that COVID-19 has brought to your life. Make a list of the things that God has given you. List the physical blessings God has given you. List the spiritual blessings he has given you through his Son.

Then, pick up the phone and call a friend to see how they are. They need you right now. Pick up your pad of paper again and write a note. Take some extra time and craft an encouraging note to someone.

Know this. We often post and scroll longing for likes, but we already have the love of one who matters more than 1000 views and a viral post. Put down the phone and think about how your God has loved you and how he cares for you every day.

Prayer: Dear Father, envy is alive and well in my heart. I see the lives other people have and I grow jealous. Kill this monster in me. Help me to see the life I have from you and in you. Your love means more to me than 1000 likes. Give my heart peace because of your great love through Christ. Amen.


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All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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