The images of their gods you shall burn with fire. Do not covet the silver or the gold that is on them and take it for yourself, because you could be ensnared by it; for it is abhorrent to the Lord your God. Do not bring an abhorrent thing into your house, or you will be set apart for destruction like it. You must utterly detest and abhor it, for it is set apart for destruction.
There is an old saying: “Don’t compare your insides with other people’s outsides“.
A few years ago, when struggling with raising my daughter, paying the bills, being impossibly busy, and having almost no social life I was reminded of this saying by a close friend. He had just listened to me complain about the state of my life and how unfair it was that I had so many burdens to deal with. I told pointed out another person we knew, who seemed to be doing so well for himself, and told my friend that I wished I had his life.
My friend was understanding, but was a good friend, and as such he was not afraid to tell me the truth, that I should not compare how I felt inside with the appearances of someone else’s outsides, as I never know what they were really going through in their lives, and could do nothing about it even if I could; I was only responsible for myself and my daughter.
These turned out to be wise words, as the person I once coveted wound up getting a divorce from his perfect wife, unable to see his great kids, being locked out of his wonderful home, and having his boat and car taken away due to bankruptcy. In time he recovered, but it was not easy, and I was no longer envious.
I have learned to be grateful for what I have, and for the tools to help me meet the challenges of life as a person and as a single parent. I have become grateful for my life, and for the lives of the good people around me, who share with me the grace and mercy of God’s love! When this love is shared it can sustain us all, and give us the support we need to make our lives something to savor, so that we have no need to covet someone else’s outsides, as we are caught up in the celebration of our own lives and the lives of our children!
Let us Pray:
God, thank you for giving us good insides! Please help us not to compare ourselves to others, but to learn from them, and celebrate our lives together! Let us see the glory of your love in our lives, and to share this love with others, and our children. Help us to remember that the love we share is more valuable than any silver or gold, because it is that same love that you have surrounded us with!