“Congratulations!” I squealed, as I went in for a big hug- the swaying back-and-forth, making weird noises kind of hug. Judging by the exterior, one would assume I was ecstatic for my friend who just earned her “fiancé” title. On the inside, however, my heart just couldn’t take it. I was jealous, wondering when it would be my turn.
Have you been there before?
Smiling on the outside, wincing in pain on the inside, when you know you’re supposed to be happy for someone? Another bridal shower…your bestie’s new job offer in the big city…you put on the smile, send a nice card, and even though you desperately want to be happy for her, you’re jealous, resentful, sad, and angry; wishing you were standing there in her happy little wedge heels.
Somewhere along the way in the adventures of womanhood, we’ve believed this lie that there’s not enough love to go around; that there’s not enough happiness for us all; and that celebrating someone else means mourning for ourselves. We are convinced that in order for one gal to be happy, another has to be unhappy.
I’ve believed this lie too- even a few times this week.
Despite my own stumbling, the Lord has been at work, etching something new on the walls of my heart, and I want to whisper it to you today:
If you’re competing for happiness, that isn’t true happiness at all. That is man-made, artificial, temporary happiness that will run out and fall off just as quickly as a plastic Band Aid. But the Lord’s happiness is everlasting, overflowing, and not contingent upon your circumstances.
You see… her happiness only steals away your happiness if your happiness comes from this world- because man-made happiness only runs as deep as our circumstances. But happiness that comes from The Spirit depends on the Lord, not on ourselves- therefore, her happiness would be no threat to yours.
Many, Lord, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?” Let the light of your face shine on us. Fill my heart with joy when their grain and wine abound. In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety. Psalm 4:6-8
When we find our happiness in Christ alone, we are then able to truly celebrate alongside a sister. We’ll find that sharing in her joy actually increases our own joy. And when we celebrate her win, we become winners too; because that’s friendship, and friendship is the greatest prize of all!
Our response to a sister’s success or celebration can be a great litmus test of the heart. If I find myself unable to cheer her on, I may be finding my happiness in circumstances of this world rather than in Christ alone.
Where is your heart with happiness this week?
What worldly success markers do you need to release in order to find true happiness that runs deeper than circumstance?
Who can God help you celebrate this week?
Wherever you are with jealousy and happiness this week, I’m rooting for you in prayer.
With Love & Freedom,
If this was encouraging to you or you know a sister who might be encouraged by this message, would you share it? I truly believe that we’ve got to be in this together. The more women who know where their true identity and happiness come from, the stronger we’ll be as sisters together.