Today's reading puts before us the topic of envy. As I began to reflect on the stories in the gospel and in the first reading, it was envy the spoke out to me. And after a few moments I asked myself this question which I place before you: DO I ever take the time to examine my conscience to determine if there are or have been moments when I allowed myself to fall into any one of the numerous envy traps. "Oh," I thought, "I realize what envy is." Then I felt that I came to think of the word in rather foggy terms or pictures. Envy, I believe, is not one of the sins most of us think we can assign to ourselves.
Here is one definition of the word: "a feeling of discontent or covetousness with regard to another's advantages, success, possession, etc.." It may be true that if we look at someone or others and the positions held, the powers that come from success and the riches that provide possessions, at first thought we might not think of these folks with what we think might be envy. Yet, do we stop to consider whether in fact and/or deed, we are not content with another person's achievements. Perhaps we don't think of envy as personal discontent with another person because he/she has achieved something I have not achieved.
How many gave been the times when criticism of another person expresses itself in words or actions which, when examined, can be better understood as envy when we are not happy that the person has gained something we might, down deep in our hearts, like to have had in our own lives.
Is it envy that is driving some nations to fail to see and understand what God truly wants from other nations? Is it envy the brings about subtle criticisms of others especially when the critics are brought to others rather than the person who is the object of my own scorn, annoyance etc..
Yes, there is much for us to consider if we are serious about removing any signs of envy form our lives. We need to know what envy it because if we do not, how can we ever remove it form our lives.