Friday, June 7, 2013

The Green Monster

It is graduation season. This is usually an emotionally painful season for me. We go to graduation parties for nieces, nephews and friends. We look at all their pictures, awards and accomplishments. We give them gifts of money to help them on their paths to college. Parents beam with pride and love for their kids. Tears flow. Moms breathe a sigh of relief. And so it should be.

And I have been jealous. It has been difficult for me to see what seems like everyone else's kids succeed but mine. Until this year, I felt completely justified in my jealousy. Why shouldn't I be jealous? I poured just as much time and energy into my kids as these weepy proud mamas. I did all the running to sports events, band concerts and music lessons. I was the team mom. I made banners. I went to all the parent-teacher conferences, open houses and spaghetti dinner fundraisers. I worked in concession stands, sat out in the desert heat, rain and cold as I cheered my kids on. We had dinner at the table every night, read bedtime stories when they were little and devotionals as they got bigger. I helped with homework. I laid awake at night praying scriptures over them. I took them to church, sent them to camp. I went along on youth trips and sent them on mission trips. I baked endless amounts of cookies for bake sale fund raisers. I stayed awake all night during slumber parties and sleep overs.

But I've never gotten to stand at a graduation party, beaming with pride at all my kids' accomplishments, anticipating their next step.

I felt justified in my jealousy.

But I was not.

It was still sin. And just because my life did not turn out like I planned... actually my kids lives did not turn out like I planned... that did not create a loophole allowing me to sin. Jealousy is sin... even for me.

So this year was different. A few weeks ago, as I was anticipating this trying graduation season, I realized that, instead of wallowing in my jealousy, I needed to confess it for what it is--dark, ugly, destructive--never justified.

And this year, I felt a little lighter... free from my sin of jealousy. Oh, it still tries to creep in, but the minute I sense its ugly green presence, I deal with it. Because it is so good to be free from it... free to hug graduates and their parents without the knife of jealousy turning in my gut... free to look at pictures, awards and certificates without the ball and chain of jealousy dragging me down.

Sin is a heavy, destructive burden, no matter how much we think we have a right to it... no matter how much we try to justify it. It is sin. And it's good to be free.

Now it's on to wedding season...


  1. I hope you don't sell yourself short and forget all the other kids' lives you made an impact on. Almost everything you listed that you did for your kids impacted me too during my childhood. You may not be my biological mom, but you were definitely my mom away from mom. Also, for the things that you went to and were at that maybe my parents could make it to, it positively impacted my life. I sincerely hope you never underestimate the impact you had in us girls' lives as well. I love you, Cindy. Xoxo

    1. Jennifer, thank you so much--you're making me cry here. I am so proud of you and the difference that you're making in the world! If I had an ounce of input for that, then I'm thrilled. And I'm beaming with pride over you! I love you.


I would love to hear from you! Let me know what you think and how I can pray for you. Most of us are carrying some pretty heavy baggage and the good news is, you don't have to carry it alone! You can lay it at the feet of Jesus, and sometimes we need help just letting go of our baggage and not picking it up again. We're in this together!