People oftentimes develop a desire for something that is not in God’s plan for them. When they fail to attain what their heart is set on, the desire can build into intense, unrelenting pressure.
Christians who are consumed by covetousness have ceased to depend on God. To reach a goal, some will manipulate circumstances because they’ve lost faith in the Lord’s ability to know what is best and provide it. Such behavior indicates a rejection of God’s sovereignty. Then fear becomes an issue as the person chases harder and harder after the object of his desire.
The consequences of jealousy are painful: A believer’s spiritual sensitivity can be weakened to the point that he no longer hears when God speaks to him. As a Christian distances himself from the Lord, an envious attitude is likely to breed ungratefulness. It’s hard to be thankful for the things one has when the focus is on what’s lacking.
Covetousness leads to a life of tension and worry. Jethro wisely advised his son-in-law Moses to search for assistants who hated ill-gotten gain. These men were more interested in what God provided for them than in what they could acquire for themselves. If we want to be like them, we must focus on God’s purpose for our life. When we are sensitive to His voice, He will teach us to distinguish between desires falling within His will and those that lie beyond. As believers, we have the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit to help us resist the lure of wrong desires. Covetousness does not have to be our downfall.
Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. You will surely wear out, both yourself and [a]these people who are with you, for the task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the disputes to God, then teach them the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do. Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens.~Exodus 18:17-21