Alright, show of hands. How many of you parents just today had to arbitrate between two children both wanting the same toy? How many of you wish that children just naturally shared and weren't filled with such outrageous jealousy? Can I hear an "amen"? Come on now, I know I'm not alone.
But today as this happened in my home, the Lord showed me a little glimpse of a pretty great truth.
Picture it with me: child one is holding the precious toy. Child two comes and tries to snatch it away. Child one grasps it all the more firmly, wrapping his arms around himself and the precious item, perhaps turning his body away from the would-be thief and shouting "MINE!"
Okay: now see it again your mind, but you are the precious item. The Enemy is trying to steal you away, and the Lord is holding you ever so close, jealous for you, saying, "No. This one is mine."
No one can ever steal a child of God out of His hand. Nearly unbelievable, except to say it was unbelievable would be to say that maybe God is unloving. And I can't say that. God is infinitely loving, so of course he would hold me and keep me and be jealous for me. Consider the price he paid to own me. Why would he then let me go so easily?
But now, just stretch your heart a little further. I had a dear friend pray for me once, as I was slipping into despair and depression, saying that he was jealous for me with a godly jealousy. See, he saw the clutch that the Enemy could get on my heart and was refusing to sit by and watch it happen. He refused to not do something to protect me from what assailled me. He was jealously grabbing me in prayer and saying to Satan "No, her heart is not yours. She is mine, in as much as we are all of one body." (Read 2 Corinthians 11:2-3)
Oh, dear brothers and sisters in Christ: we need, I need, to feel that heated, divine jealousy for each other. I need to look at you in the midst of your struggles and feel as desperate for your rescue as you do. We need to look out for each other as if we were protecting our own limbs. With jealousy, holding each other close in prayer.
As much as I hate to see a selfish, jealous streak in my kids, I am so glad to have been reminded today of Christ's beautiful jealousy for me, and the challenge put out to me to be so jealous for you. I need to pray for you like your life depends on it, because it I think it does. Lord give me that love and jealousy for your people that drives me to intercede for them.