Every time I go to the bank, he gives my children the exact same colored lollipops. I’ve never asked him to do this, but, without fail, he digs through the lollipop basket until he finds a matching set of Dum Dum lollipops.
He must be a dad because he knows about the fight he is saving me. The one where each of my boys are eyeing the lollipops they don't have rather than enjoying the one they do. The one where they whine for their favorite color. The one in which they are not satisfied until they have what their sibling has.
As I drive away from the bank’s drive-through window, I inwardly thank this man, and I think about this picture of human jealousy: envious, controlling, domineering, possessive, and self-focused.
God is a Dad, but he is not like my bank teller.
He gives lollipops out to everyone, but he does not give them equally or similarly. He gives them perfectly, however, and until we trust that, we’ll be dissatisfied with what we’ve been given.
As a Father, God knows his kids’ tendency to want what their siblings have. It's hard not wanting the bright pink lollipop when we’re given the brown one. But unlike our spiteful jealousy, God’s jealousy for us says, “I absolutely know what is best for you and I want you to have it. Because I love you, I will not give you anything less than my best. However, what I give you is going to be different than what I give that person you are comparing yourself to.” He lifts our eyes up to him and away from watching others and reminds us that he has perfectly and strategically given us our gifts, talents, and ministries.
Romans 8:28 reminds us that God is always working things for good on our behalf:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
“What a power would be unleashed in your life and mind if we really believed that the almighty God, whose counsel cannot be frustrated, is this very minute, busily at work making sure that what happens to us this afternoon and tomorrow at home and at work is only what is best for us!"