Looking back on my childhood, I now realize I was a somewhat mischievous kid. During the summer months especially, “our gang” of neighborhood children would circle around on our bikes playing “doorbell ditch” and throwing water balloons at unsuspecting passerby’s. We regularly monopolized the phone lines “prank calling’ little old ladies. There was something about these acts that excited me. It must have been the adrenaline rush.
But one day my tricks caused someone a lot of pain. It was 6th grade summer school and a few select students were chosen to play their musical instruments for general assembly. Parents, students and teachers were invited.
I was not among the chosen musicians, so jealousy fueled my impish nature to new heights. As I sat in the darkened auditorium next to my friend Mary who waited to perform on her violin, my hand silently crept toward her instrument case. Finding the knobs that tightened her violin, I began turning them ever so slightly, one at a time loosening the strings in the darkness.
A Devious Act
When Mary rose to her feet to perform she had no ideas what awaited her. Making her way to the stage, she placed the violin under her chin and drew the bow across the strings. The sound that emanated from her instrument was awful! Again and again she tried to play but the only sound she could muster was a grating, screeching noise. Finally, in humiliation, Mary rushed from the stage, tears streaming down her hot cheeks. I’m sure guilt was written all over my face but I lingered in the dark auditorium hoping I would not be fount out. I wasn’t.
Jealousy is not called the green-eyed monster for nothing. For, when it takes a hold of us we often act in ways that are less than human. As adults, we too, are plagued by thoughts of insecurity and inadequacy that lead to jealousy. For every day we meet people who are smarter, more attractive, and richer than us.
Even so, our Creator has made each one of us very special and unique. When we realize God loved us so much that Jesus was sent to die in our place, we begin to recognize how special we really are. Then, we can love and value ourselves more deeply, as well as others, and the green-eyed monster begins to melt away.