About the Author

Jessica Turner is the author of Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter and Thrive, and blogs on The Mom Creative. Every day is a juggling act as she balances working full-time, making memories with her family, photographing the every day and trying to be...

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  1. Oh yes, you are NOT alone in this. I’ve been struggling recently too. I love how you turn a jealous thought into thankfulness for what you DO have. My husband was reminding me the other day when I was jealous of someone who seemed to have more than me, that I can only be ME and that is who he fell in love with. And ME is who God created me to be – so who am I to think that who He made me to be is not good enough?

      • I can assure you that we men deal with it to. At least I do. But I only recently realized that I was being jealous. I thought I was just seeing deficiencies in my life that perhaps God wanted me to deal with, by going to college or working harder and watching TV less. When I see my co workers with nice things, and me with much less (in my mind at least) I think that I am less deserving because I’m not educated enough or lucky enough or blessed enough.

        I’m going through the exercises of renewing my mind in Christ. Going to Him with all my hurts and desires and giving them fully to Him. Thinking on these things, as it says in Galations. Even so it hurts to humble my self and accept what I have as being His will. It is truly a process.

  2. Jealously has been tripping this girl up as well! It’s like green is my new color. But I wonder what that does to the heart of God. It’s a blatant disreguard for His loving plan. Thanks, Jess, for verses that, for me, have held a giant mirror in my face revealing a look I wasn’t going for. They have convicted my heart!

    • “But I wonder what that does to the heart of God. It’s a blatant disreguard for His loving plan.” Beautifully said! I didn’t ever see it that way. Thank you!!

  3. This is one of my biggest struggles. We’ve been going through a time that can only be described as testing, and I stay jealous of those who seem to be receiving blessing after blessing. I ask God every day, “When is it our turn?”
    Thank you for the verses you shared. There is no room for this in my life. It’s bringing more strife into an already difficult time.

  4. This is one that trips me up sometimes, too. When I stop to think about what I have to be grateful for, I realize that I am very fortunate. However, sometimes Satan does plant those seeds of discontent in our heads and they can be very hard to uproot.

  5. This is something I struggle with as well. Sometimes, I have a hard time remembering all the things God has done, rather than all the things that I don’t have. Thank you for the verses. I need to break this stronghold.

  6. Okay, initially I was thinking, “That WAS so me last spring…” Then you started listing statements. Hmmm… maybe it’s still me. 🙂 Yes, I think we all struggle with it, the trick is for me, evidently, recognizing it! Love the article and the ways to tackle it.

    • “That WAS so me last spring…” Love that statement. I’ve been known to either ignore the fact that I’m jealous or downplay it.

  7. Proverbs 14:30: A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot

    I love this verse as a reminder of how destructive the comparison game can be. Jealousy running wild, can really eat you up on the inside. It’s something I’m recently addressing in my life. I guess before, I justified it as not such a bad thing. Now I know it only brings discontent. Thank you for reminding me to refocus, and see how God has blessed me!

  8. Thank you for posting about this, Jessica! Jealousy is something that I struggle with as well. I want to be content in what the Lord has provided for ME- not waste time comparing what everyone has. I read a quote somewhere that said “don’t let comparison steal your joy.” And that’s what happens!

    Thanks for the reminder to focus on OUR blessings!!

  9. You can count me in this “club.” (You know, I’d really like a minivan, too!) I really liked it when you said, “…every time a jealous thought enters my mind, I flip the thought and give thanks.” I’m going to try doing that, starting right now. Thanks for another inspiring post, Jessica.

  10. WOW, did I EVER need this!! Thank you so much for sharing. I love your idea of flipping the thought and will work on doing the same. Things have been super stressful in my life at the moment and I find myself being consumed by thoughts of jealousy and envy. To try to combat this, I have recently begun to donate a few minutes each night to think back at my day and remember the “Little Things” that may get lost though all of the stress. One of yesterdays was simply the enthusiasm from my children about receiving new toothbrushes. Makes me smile just thinking about it. Jessica, when you are having your thoughts think of all of us out here that are envious of you and your talents! :o)

  11. In a conversation with a friend the other day, the word jealousy surfaced. God turned on the light switch then and there and made me realize that jealousy is what is bringing me down lately. Saw somewhere to “have an attitude of gratitude” and have been trying what you are saying here – flipping my terrible, envious thoughts into thoughts of thankfulness. Thank you for sharing your heart today. I needed this!

  12. When I saw this in my inbox this morning, the tears filled my eyes. I’m sure the ink in my prayer journal was still wet from me begging God to help me with jealousy and anger. I am a performance driven person, trying to become a grace receiver and giver. But Satan knows how to point out the areas where I seem to be getting no return for my “work” and others are blessed for simply waking up. And I take the bait almost every time. Someone in an earlier comment called this a stronghold. I couldn’t agree more. Thank you for your wisdom about flipping the thought. We have been trying to add purposeful gratitude into our day, everyone sharing something they’re grateful for around the dinner table at night. I don’t want this to be my kids’ battle as well. Thank you so much for talking about this ugly topic and encouraging us to see it as God sees it, and get rid of it.

    • I just saw myself in your comment-But Satan knows how to point out the areas where I seem to be getting no return for my “work” and others are blessed for simply waking up. And I take the bait almost every time. I really need to work on this but I find it very hard. Would appreciate some prayer on this.

  13. Jessica,

    I find that it helps to remember and be grateful for how jealous Jesus is in His love for me, and I remember the verses from Exodus 34:14 and Song of Solomon 8:6. These help me to be grateful once again. Thanks for your post. Its an amazing reminder. 🙂

  14. THANK YOU!
    Jessica; I love that you didn’t just define your problem but gave a solution, a Godly solution to turn those thoughts around to thankful prayers to God. (I know I am echoing others!!)
    I think I use up a lot of energy trying to rid myself of sinful patterns (which is good) but I forget to arm myself for when they do occur. Often I am just struck by feelings of failure like “well, i am here AGAIN…struggling with this..AGAIN.”
    Turning my thoughts immediately, taking them to the throne room and casting them to the One, gives me some ammunition.
    Thanks for reminding me where the really good ammunition is kept!
    -tonia

  15. Those verses are so powerful. Sometimes a little jealousy doesn’t feel like a big deal, but those verses use some strong language. Flipping the jealous thought to gratitude…thanks for that thought!

  16. I can certainly relate…. And the interesting thing is, that for those of us in the blog community I think an innocent “tour” of our favorite blog/sites can get the devil in our ears even more quickly as we start to envy what we think we see from our computer screens. Thinking someone has their life more put together than we do. Thinking she has less-flabby arms in her vacations pictures than we do. Thinking there’s nothing but perfection on the other end of that internet connection…. it’s easy to get into the comparison cycle. But of course, what we don’t see from this “perfect being” is the meltdown her toddler just had, the fight she had with her husband before work, the personal criticism she puts herself through (and I’m sure the list could go on)….. and had we been privy to that we’d know “she” is just like the rest of us anyway 🙂

  17. This is such a good reminder — Count your blessings when you have envy. I’ve been struggling with wanting another child when it hasn’t happened yet. Counting my blessings: I have one amazing daughter already and … I can sleep through the night ;)!!

  18. Oh yes! I have often found too that when I take a good look at the “whole” picture of the people I have been jealous of, they have situations that I would rather not have, thank you very much!! While there are areas we are not happy with, there is so much more to be thankful for; and it helps to keep in mind that even the short areas or troubles we do face are designed to bless us in the end (Deut. 8). I reprove myself of my own pettiness when I catch myself in not being happy for someone else in areas that they are doing well in, where I may struggle, because it is that way in both of our lives for a GOOD reason…then I can thank God from the heart…for both set of blessings – theirs and mine!! Thanks for a great and candid post. I think we have all been there!

  19. I think I’m more covetous versus jealous…but I can identify with your heart hear. And I’m grateful for the remedy.

    Oooo, and I had to smile at the minivan deal; I JUST got a new (used) car–MY FIRST NON-VAN IN 15 YEARS! And I’m absolutely ecstatic!

    For a mom who is NOT a car girl, I’m surprised by how much I like NOT driving that thing :).

  20. I would have really liked one or two of those thankful journals but when I went to order them – idk, it was a pain, so I cancelled it. Just saying.

  21. Thanks for the post. This is human nature and is made worse by society. Thankfulness is the way to combat it. I just finished a post for monday on my blog about the same thing. It is hard to focus on the things we want/wish we had when we fill our mind with the gifts we have been given. God Bless!

  22. Ah, yes…the comparison-game. And I try to mask it as observing, too, yet He knows my heart that longs for more and doesn’t always choose contentment and gratitude.

  23. Can I confess that I am jealous of those who are at Relevant 11? I don’t even blog, but would love to be there to meet in person many of the bloggers I follow! Oh well….instead I will choose to be thankful that I get to be in my pajamas early on this rainy cold day! 🙂

  24. MmHmm! I’m raising my hand and saying right here, me. Jealousy pops up here and there. Thank you for calling us to pray those verses in letting God search our hearts.

    You remind me that it’s not that jealousy comes, but it’s that we entertain it. Thank you also for giving us this gift…”And so, every time a jealous thought enters my mind, I flip the thought and give thanks.”

  25. Oh, jealousy. I have had to CHECK myself more often than I care to admit, lately. Forced to remind myself that even though it seems like all I’m getting are hurdles and others are, as someone earlier put it “blessed just for waking up” – that those hurdles are a blessing from God to me. You can’t learn perseverance when everything comes to you when and how you’d like it to.

  26. Oh my! You really hit the nail on the head with this post. Clearly (judging from the comments) this is a very common struggle. And the thing about “justifying it as just observing real life–so guilty of this. I’m going to try to at least begin checking my thoughts on this. Thanks for the verses and for telling the truth!

  27. Love this one. It is so true and I htink that is why so many people are commenting. I know that there are times when I struggle with this one. Especially when times are tough and I am doing the best I can, and somehow, it never seems like enough. It really, really helps me to count my blessings and go from there. I find that when I name them, I can put things in perspective just a little bit better.

  28. wow!! this is a fantastic post! thank you for sharing your honest heart and how we all struggle with this at times. I love those verses! I must write them and put them in my car to read everyday! you’re the best!! ~nancy~

  29. I hear you on the minivan! We live debt free on purpose and have a lot of moolah saved to pay only cash for our next car (when my 200K 11 yr old one dies..LOVE me some Honda CRV!) but not enough to buy a GOOD minivan we could take any cross country trips in instead of flying. Fam of four, huge dog, we NEED a minivan. WHAT??? Didn’t people with families drive cross country before minivans were invented? It took awhile fro me to be thankful for what we have and RECOGNIZE my NEED was NOOOOOOT a need. AMEN!

  30. I struggle with materialism so much. Right now I am reading the book Kisses from Katie, written by a 22 year old girl who is called to live in Uganda taking care of orphans and the needy… it has so helped me have a perspective change and get my eyes off myself…instead I find myself jealous that I am not in Uganda to help these kids! Amazing book.

  31. I also think about us doing our best not to foster jealousy. If we did get the vacation, or the date out with hubby, do we emphasize our physical blessings more than our spiritual ones – especially on social network sites? Are we being considerate to the widow or the single or the childless, or the jobless friends? Not that we need to be silent and not rejoice. But I want to rejoice in my spiritual blessings in greater proportion than material ones. It’s just something I have thought about since I read this in 1 John 2. I still don’t know how to do this right.

    “For everything in the world-the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes, the BOASTING OF WHAT HE HAS AND DOES – comes not from the Father, but from the world. “

  32. That verse in James, “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice,” reads “confusion” in some translations. Confusion reaped for sowing jealousy and selfish ambition! Wow. I have had areas of confusion, that’s for sure.
    A friend of mine wrote a song about comparison, perhaps it will bless you:
    http://garritymusic.com/music-2/sweet-surrender/
    Just go to the link above and scroll down till you see “Just One Grain”.

  33. Jess, thank you so much for being brave and saying the things that I think many many more of us than care to admit struggle with.

    I love that about you.

    Also, I too have a crush on mini vans! 🙂

    xoxo
    LJ

  34. Oh, yes, yes, yes. And also, this: I have been thinking lately how often I scorn the gifts that make “my story” exactly that…MY story. My extra weight? That is part of my story for right now. Babies do that to you! My house being smaller than the family’s that is half our family’s size? This wonderful house is part of my story. That family getting a minivan? That wonderful gift is part of their story, and we can give thanks for that, too! “Thank you, Lord, for providing for them in such a marvelous way. Thank you for providing for us in such a marvelous way. Thank you that when you look at me, you don’t see my weight or my cramped house or my fickle car. Thank you that you see the robes of Christ.”

    You have excellent thoughts on a touchy subject that we ALL stumble over!

    Thank you.

  35. You are so not alone in this. This is a common battle with me. Another strategy I’ve found helpful is to pray for God to bless the people I’m jealous of. It’s kind of like praying for your enemies. You don’t think they’re your enemies when you’re comparing yourself to them, but maybe you really are setting them up like that. So pray for God to bless them in every way. That will cause the comparison games to stop dead in their tracks. And, no matter if you feel like doing it or not, I’m sure it repulses Satan as well.
    Blessings

  36. Dear Sisters,
    Thank you, Jessica, for the great post, but also to all of you who so well articulated the thoughts of my heart.
    I have a minivan– bought brand new a few years ago, and I loved it soooo much that I used to joke I should be on the Honda Odyssey Minivan commercials. Now, it’s a few years older and though it’s perfectly good, I find I am coveting an SUV of some sort— a sportier car for hauling bunches of kids around.
    WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME????
    Our cars are paid off, thank you Lord, and your post has made me see that my mindset is soooooo wrong. I am going to go rejoice in my wonderful paid-off minivan, and remember that there are plenty of people who would love to be driving it, and it is a blessing and a treasure, and more than I deserve.
    Thank you so much, Jessica, and especially all of the commenters.