(This is Day 8 in a write 31 days series. Click here for the title page)
Mary spent a half hour on the phone- locked in the bedroom away from the demanding kids- talking to her friend Lisa from college. Lisa bragged on about her free lifestyle. She goes to an incredible megachurch in Chicago, she works for a top marketing firm, gets to travel on the company dime, has a husband who seems to understand, kids who excel in school and sports and music, it appears that she’s got it all. Mary gets off the phone more jealous than she can recall ever being. She knows deep inside this is wrong and God has separate, different blessings for her, but her friend’s blessings look so much more like what Mary wanted for her life.
Lisa spoke with her college friend Mary last night; man it was good to hear her voice! Lisa doesn’t have many friends; they’re pretty much just work acquaintances. She tried hard to put on a good face about her own life. Mary’s life sounded so perfect. Lisa longed for the relaxed schedule of a stay at home mom. It seemed so fun and rewarding! However, Mary home-schools her kids and that terrifies Lisa, she could never deal all day long and not get a break from the kids…. except…she’s actually not sure because she’s never really been home with them for several days in a row. Mary can keep her house together, cook or bake for the family, be available for her husband and clearly present for the kids all the time. Lisa felt super low and grasping to remember why she chose to do life this way.
Dearest Uncle Savant,
I arranged a phone call for the college friends, Mary and Lisa, to reminisce. My true intent, of course, was to use them against each other for my purposes. It worked like a charm!
Each woman envies the other. Neither can see the good in their own life for the illusion of a perfect life in her friend. Neither realize that every puny human life, no matter who’s, has some sort of miserableness.
They have totally forgotten any influence or purpose that our Enemy has given them and replaced it with discontentedness, jealousy and greed for what they don’t have. People are so easy to influence. Typically, most are longing for what they don’t have, thereby blotting out any recognition of how wonderful their own lives are.
None of these realize how easy they have it, what a luxury their life is and how terrible it is in other places. With nudges from us, they only spend a moment feeling sorry and guilty about tragedy around the world then go order their $6 grande fat-free latte’s with an extra shot and no whip. It satisfies them to send money and disconnect, choosing to be blind to real need. If we influence with a slight bit of truth and a good warm feeling, but then distract them with their own personal “needs”, we can keep them from being truly effective.
These two women have ideas in their heads of what they think life should’ve been, I simply help them dwell on it and their regrets. The smallest seed of dissatisfaction can be a breeding ground for comparison and feeling of inadequacy and insecurity. Not often do they shake free from this potent thought pattern, but when they do it’s because they’ve remembered to pray and give thanks. So my aim is to bury them so deep with dissatisfaction for nearly everything that gratefulness cannot float to the surface.
They are both content at the moment to rely on their own thoughts and problems and not give a second thought to seeking our Enemy.
I will look forward to hearing back from you regarding Anne and the suggestions you have!