Today's Devotional Thought
September 25, 2012 by Rachel Piferi
Rejoice for Others
When something good happens to someone else, how do you react? Do you genuinely rejoice for them? Or are you jealous?
There is a lot that is written about being there for others when they are hurting. When someone we love is mourning, oftentimes we see people gather around and genuinely mourning with them. In fact, many of us seem to be pretty willing to jump in and carry each other's burdens and share in their pain.
Are we just as willing to gather around when someone has succeeded or flourished in some area of their life? Do we gather around and truly rejoice for others when they do?
We live in a competitive society and it seems that we all are constantly trying to outdo the Jones'. If someone buys a nice house, we want to buy a slightly nicer house. If someone goes on a nice vacation, we want to go on a nicer vacation. If someone throws a beautiful wedding for their daughter, we want to throw a slightly nicer wedding for our daughter. We are constantly comparing what we have or what we do to what those around us have or do. And, worse than just comparing, we want just as much as them and then a little more.
What this has done, I believe, is really erode our ability to be happy for others' successes and victories in life. We seem to be constantly looking at other people's lives as a benchmark for our own. And, instead of focusing on the good that the other person is experiencing in their situation, we focus on ourselves, our own deficiencies and wants, and we get jealous. And this can happen in all of our relationships from the acquaintance at work that we barely know to our very closest loved ones.
Today friends, I would like you to focus on being truly happy for other people when they experience good things in their life. In fact, when something good happens to someone else, just focus on them and how good this is for them. Don't focus on yourself in other people's situations, successes, and joys. Don't focus on how you wish you had what they have. Focus on them and how much this must be good for them. Focusing on how we wished we had someone else's job, possessions, relationships, or even spiritual gifts, will only interfere with your ability to truly connect and love as Jesus loved. And, I would even argue that if you cannot genuinely share in joys of your loved ones, then you are not loving them completely as Jesus loved.
Rejoice for your friends and families and acquaintances today. Truly and genuinely thank God for what He has given to other people, not just what He has given to you. And when you do, I think you will find an element of love that is very special. We seem to easily hurt when those we love hurt. It is time to completely love and start rejoicing when those we love rejoice.