Hey, I want that, too!

Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure. But as for me, I almost lost my footing. My feet were slipping, and I was almost gone. For I envied the proud when I saw them prosper despite their wickedness. (Psalm 73:1-3) 

I imagine we all have those moments when we see stuff happening around us in this world, then stop to ponder how has the world 'gone so wrong' in its actions and beliefs? We might not understand how the wicked prosper, the misguided rise to positions of power, or the righteous lose out on what appears to be so much. That doesn't mean we lose our faith in the one who holds all mankind in his hands and will eventually bring all to judgment - the good, the bad, and the worst. Moments of doubt and confusion come to all of us - we just have to press into our faith a bit harder, so those doubts aren't given any ground to fester. Emotions will surface that indicate we are struggling a bit with what we see, hear, or imagine, but those emotions don't have to be denied. They are real, so the sooner we acknowledge them, the quicker we can seek God's help in 'settling them'. What really helps during those times of struggle is our friends who come alongside us. We need each other to help us when our faith begins to weaken, or when our emotions seem to be getting the best of us. 

When we observe the wicked prosper, it is possible we have a little bit of our own battle stemming from our pride? After all, we want to prosper, as well. We want the 'good stuff' to happen in our lives - is that wrong? No, it is not, but we might not realize just how quickly our pride can be dashed upon the cold, hard ground of disappointment and failure! To become prosperous or be elevated to a position of power in this world is not wrong. We might even want our lives to be kind of carefree and without all the hurdles we could encounter along that path to success. To pursue the path out of prideful ambition is when we run into difficulties. To pursue a path that 'gives us everything we desire' may just throw us into a greater pit of emotional distress than we were in when we found ourselves with a bit of envy toward those who 'had' what we did not. If we were honest, when the wicked succeed and prosper in their ways, we might even want them to 'get what is coming to them'. Is that wrong? Vengeance is, but to desire to see righteousness succeed and wickedness decline is never wrong. 

We might just see the wicked doing the same old things - things that don't bring God honor or give way to justice for all mankind. That might even begin to bother us more and more as we see them succeed in their ways and righteous individuals seemingly 'fail' as they attempt to forward their beliefs. It is hard to stand in observation of the 'little guy' being trodden underfoot, but we must never lose sight of the 'BIG GUY' who always walks with the 'little guy' on this earth! God doesn't want us to be tempted to compromise our faith, making choices to follow after things or people who will distract us or dissuade us from our walk with him. He will always intervene in our lives any time we allow our pride to create a yearning for the path of the wicked. This is a very good thing, because we aren't always capable of discerning those two diverging paths on our own! God's presence will always help us know when pride is drawing us away from the narrow path and down the one that will eventually cause the wicked to stumble. Just sayin!

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