The room was full of anticipation. It was the last night of Vacation Bible School (a.k.a. Summer Adventure Nights at our church). This was the night of the big drawing to see who would win the two prizes. About 150 kids waited with great expectation at the chance to hear their names called out. The first prize was a night at Zuma, a local video arcade and fun center and the second prize was a 5 lb Hershey bar.
Pastor Doug reached his hand into the pile of names and drew out a piece of paper. The room that had been flooded with laughter, shouts, and conversation was now still with quiet hope. Then, with all eyes wide looking at the paper-filled basket of names, the winner of the HUGE 5 lb candy bar was announced....LUKE MOLITOR.
The room erupted with claps, however, the one most excited was not Luke, but his brother Joe. Joe leaped out of his seat, fist in the air, face red with joy. Joe shouted to Luke, "Luke, you won, Luke you won!" You would have thought he had won!
Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Romans 12:15
Just to give you some perspective on this candy bar, it is literally the size of a small child. It is huge and thick, 5 lbs is quite a bit of chocolate. Below is a picture of the monster bar.
I wish I could say my child is a saint and he was just happy for Luke. Joe has admitted that he was partly excited for Luke and partly excited because he knew he would be getting some of the giant chocolate sweetness. Either way, my heart was blessed to see him happy for his brother.
It pleases the Lord when we are happy for our brothers and sisters in Christ when they are blessed. I believe it opens the door in our life for more blessings. It is similar for us as parents. If your kids respond well when you give a gift to one of their siblings, doesn't it make your heart glad? Doesn't it make you also want to bless them as well?
We all need to be like Joe, excited when we see our friends blessed. Too many times, we compare our blessings with what others have been given.
My friend, Amy, is the one who told me about Joe's reaction. Then, she suggested I should write about it. She said when others are blessed, we can rejoice with them because God is no respector of persons (James 1:9) What God does for one, he can also do for another. God's blessings never run out! His candy bar is infinite. We shouldn't be jealous, but rather, rejoice believing that what God did for one, He can do for us also!
If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will you Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Matt 7:11
We need to be sure we are in relationship with the Lord and ask Him for what we need and for our desires. We need to ask with a pure heart and a willingness to let the Lord say no if it is not best for us. There are some instances when we can KNOW the Lord's will for us as stated in His Word. There are other times when we cannot know and we just have to trust in His goodness and faithfulness to give us His best.
Of course, it may not be God's will to give us exactly the same gift He gives someone else. He will always give us what is best for us. God knows what will be good for us and what will hurt us. He doesn't give us anything that will hurt us unless we are relentless about it. Then, He might. An example of this is the Isrealites in the bible, He gave into their request for a king because they insisted continually. It was not God's best for them. So, be careful about what you are asking God for, it might not be best for you.
God's plan for us is always for good and never for evil (Jeremiah 29:11). We can rejoice when others are blessed knowing we serve a good God and He loves us infinitely. Next time someone you know is blessed, don't be jealous, be glad knowing that you too get to share in the blessings. Leap out of your seat, with your fist in the air, shouting with joy for your friend. You too will get some of that giant chocolate sweetness!