It's true. My husband & I kinda decided last year to not do Valentine's gifts and we still didn't this year. That doesn't mean we never will, but for now, it just doesn't really matter to us. We like to save & splurge a little more for our anniversary. (Valentine's is almost exactly our half-anniversary. Kinda like half-birthdays yeah?)
There's a girl I went to college with that got an Iphone from her husband for Christmas. And for Valentine's Day? A new tablet. Probably worth close to $1000. My eyes were popping out of my head? Aren't they "poor college students" just "trying to get by"? How in the heck do they afford that?? Then, I pull up Instagram, and I see that someone is going to Europe for a 3 week trip for their anniversary in a few months. And then on Twitter I see someone say how grateful they are for their NEW CAR that their husband got them for Valentine's Day. And then I see all the millions of dollars worth of flowers on Facebook that men are buying for women. It's pretty easy to start to feel envious isn't it?
Jeffrey R Holland said it best...
"Brothers and sisters, there are going to be times in our lives when someone else gets an unexpected blessing or receives some special recognition. May I plead with us not to be hurt—and certainly not to feel envious—when good fortune comes to another person? We are not diminished when someone else is added upon. We are not in a race against each other to see who is the wealthiest or the most talented or the most beautiful or even the most blessed. The race we are in is the race against sin, and surely is one of the most universal of those.
Furthermore, is a mistake that just keeps on giving. Obviously we suffer a little when some befalls but requires us to suffer all that befalls we know! What a bright prospect that is—downing another quart of pickle juice every time anyone around you has a happy moment!"
My happiness should NEVER rely on what happens in other people's lives. Isn't that an interesting way to think about it? My life isn't any worse just because someone is going to Mexico for the 3rd time this year. My life isn't any worse because my sister and brother in law were able to afford a house worth $100,000 more than mine. My life isn't any worse because my friend's parents paid for her schooling and she doesn't have debt. My life is the same. Regardless of what happens to others.
How sad it would be, to live a life so full of negativity, that we never get to celebrate the success of others. To let Satan make us feel inadequate or worthless, just because someone else is succeeding. We are important. Your marriage is important. Your job is important. And you have a role to play in your life that no one else can ever fill.
We may feel envy occassionally, that's pretty normal. But what we do with that envy is what matters. If you can't talk yourself out of the negativity, the envy, and the judgement, pray your way out of it. Life is hard enough already. Why would we honestly choose to down a quart of pickle juice every time someone else has a happy moment?
So when you see the girl who gets the Michael Kohrs watch for Valentine's Day, tell her it looks amazing on her. I promise, you won't ever regret being a little too kind.