Good morning. I broke my no carb rule today and had a delicious lemon blueberry pancake. Since we’re stuck at the house today (son has one of the viruses going around) I thought why not make pancakes for the kids. I may have decided that Sunday meant I could let the guard down a bit too. I’m not asking for forgiveness I’m just letting you know – I’m not perfect and I can fall to temptation too.
And wow does that fit into the week ahead or what?
Not everyone who reads this blog believes the same as I do. For example: some people do not see the magnetism of pineapples while others scoff at the idea of working out.
This week I have to take it a little deeper than the kiddie pool. I have wonderful readers who will tune out because of this post. That means I have to ask – don’t X the window. Just read it like you would one of my light and airy Pinterest 5 posts. Just take a minute view and digest and either carry it with you or let it go out your excretory system. I’m just asking that you be open.
I’m supposed to be at church today. Actually, I was looking forward to being there today. It is Palm Sunday and there are really only two Sundays I look forward to each liturgical year – Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday.
Why? Is it because I remember the fun of this time of year growing up? Egg hunts, dress shopping, new shoes with a matching purse?
No. OK, maybe when I was ten!
Why? Maybe because while some of you think that Christmas is our big whammer jammer I must tell you that it is not.
Today, Palm Sunday, marks the week of the “meat and potatoes” of a faith I share with nearly 2.2 billion other people who identify as a Christian. This is the celebration of the day Jesus Christ rode into Jerusalem on the back of a donkey to shouts of, “HOSANNA!” He rode into a city where he was welcomed and where people celebrated his entry. He came into Jerusalem a hero. And yet he was a hated hero. Because behind all the ones who were joyous of his arrival there were the ones who were disgusted by his being.
They were the people who craved control and power so much that they commiserated together to eliminate him from their little world.
They were jealous of his wealth of knowledge of the holy texts.
They were envious of his growing following.
Their greed blinded them from realizing just who he was.
Those who craved control & power, who were jealous, envious, and greedy.
Funny how the world has not changed much since AD 33.
I challenge us all today to find time in quiet reflection and examine our hearts and minds and do a self-examination asking ourselves –
- Am I utilizing authoritarian role in the correct way?
- Have I intentionally used my power to hurt or wrongly criticize another person?
- Remember that the power you are given is to be used in positive and constructive way. Do not misuse your role by allowing power to assist in building arrogant and ill willed character.
Jealous and Envy are not the same. To best define these before self-reflection let’s take a deeper look at jealousy and envy.
My favorite teaching of jealous and envy is in this way:
Jealousy is when we want what we cannot have. We become jealous of those who have it and often create a negative environment around those people.
Envy is when we want what we do not have but we build a plan to get it. Now you can take a positive path to obtaining it or a negative path so check your path.
In your self-examination identify people you have been jealous of. Why have you had jealous? Do you still? How can you turn jealousy into a constructive plan to work toward what you are jealous of? How can you turn this into positive envy?
Finances? Are you mishandling your money? That can be fixed.
Relational? Is your marriage crumbling? What further positive steps can you take to make things better?
Objective? Is there an object that is causing jealousy? Houses, cars, labels, we’re a materialist society. If you are jealous of these objects maybe you can rebudget and reassess to decide if these are things that are truly worth your obsession.
Vanity? Women are often jealous of other women’s hair, skin, nails, bodies. When you take it to a level of trash talking or starting rumors then you have created a sin. If you’re goal is to slim down or tone or have that perfect haircut then turn your jealousy into an action plan for yourself to make it happen.
Jealousy makes you a monster. Envy gives you goal.
And finally look at the greed in your life.
We can talk until our face is blue about greed and money. Stop. Take a step further out. What are you greedy over in your life other than money.
Are you greedy over your children? So much so that you limit their experiences? That isn’t healthy parenting.
Are you greedy over your spouse? That greed can take on a bad form of control. You are not the master of anyone.
Are you greedy over the flour and sugar? Not literally the flour and sugar but when you see someone who needs a little help (not necessarily monetary but maybe dropping a kid off at school, needing their car jumped off, or their trashcan blew over. Are you helping? Or are you greedy by pulling a Scrooge and making an ill comment as you turn your head?
Whether you are Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Daoist, Mormon, Agnostic, or Atheist you can do this assessment of yourself. You can identify the pieces of your life that are trying to destruct the other areas. Now is the chance to right some wrongs and make your life more than it has been before.