Dealing With Jealousy

Pinterest is one of my favorite sites to go to. Not only do I get amazing craft tips, but I get to see some funny memes too. On one particular day, I came across a meme with two deer. One deer was licking the other deer while staring at the camera. In big letters it read, “This is me when another girl comes in when I’m with my boyfriend.”

At first I laughed at the pin, but later on it made me reminiscence at my past.

I lived with a jealous heart.

Jealousy is a very common theme among today’s media. It is so common, that many people think it’s normal.

But jealousy was tearing away at my life. Especially with my relationship with my husband. For years, I had lived with a low self esteem and a troubling self consciousness. I had been cheated on in a previous relationship. When I got into the relationship with my husband, I started living out that Pinterest meme. Every young and skinny girl that walked in created a defensive spark within me. If they were dressed a certain way and I felt like my spouse liked it, I would desire for that same outfit. Getting ready for church was a pain as I would search for that perfect outfit that would keep my husbands attention. I started to hate my clothes because I felt like they were not perfect. I would get irritable with my husband. As I let jealousy get a control of me, I allowed myself to fall into this destructive pattern of hating myself and desiring for the wrong things.

In the Bible, we see several themes of jealousy and the intense desire for something more that isn’t in line with God. But the one that stood out to me was the story of Eve and the Tree of Knowledge. Eve had it all. She had Adam. She had a perfect life in the garden where they had food and didn’t have to worry about work. Most of all, she was in a place where she got to be close to God. What I mean by close was that she got to actually see God and be in his presence.

Then she came across the serpent who tempted her to eat from the one tree that they were not to eat from. Eve looked at the fruit and she thought it looked good. Worst of all, she desired eating the fruit because she saw it as a way of gaining wisdom. Eve had it all, but she wanted more. She wanted wisdom. That desire would lead to the downfall of Adam and the couple being kicked out of Eden.

When we allow jealousy to take control in our relationships, it causes us to desire things that are not of God. I don’t know if Eve was jealous, but I know she craved for something and attained it the wrong way. For me, what really caved in for me was when I found myself crying one evening when my husband asked me, “Are you coming to this event because you want to, or because you are jealous?” That hit the hardest. I realized right there and then that my jealousy and this intense desire to be better than other girls was creeping into my marriage.

At that time, after discussing these things with my husband, did I begin to realize that I didn’t have to be jealous. I didn’t have to strive to be better than the other girls. My husband chose me because I was the best in his eyes. I’ve won him and he wants no other. That’s the same for you in your relationship. Your spouse chose you and only you. They don’t want anyone else.

However, I do want to point out a part where jealousy can be healthy. If your spouse is talking or hanging out with someone of the opposite sex way too much, the jealousy within you is a healthy jealousy. It’s an actual warning signal to you that you need to have a talk with them about what is going on. Especially if it’s getting to the point that they are flirting with each other. If it is coming down to that, then you do need to step in and have a talk with your spouse.

Otherwise, if your spouse is totally devoted to you and you are living with an unhealthy jealousy, you need to stop yourself. Take a step back and remind yourself that your spouse picked you. They had their pick of so many others, but they picked you and only you. That means you are special to them. Every morning, remind yourself that you are special to them and to God (of course). By telling yourself that, you are closing that door on jealousy. Most of all, be content with yourself.

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