Don't set your heart on anything that is your neighbour's.
Now I know it's getting near to Christmas, so why am I writing about the Ten Commandments? I'm asking us to think about the Tenth Commandment so that you won't spoil your Christmas by being jealous about what other people might get as presents and you didn't! Jealousy spoils everything. Mind you, there is a good jealousy. The Bible tells us that God is jealous, meaning that he cares very, very much about the honour of his name and the good of his people. In that sense, we can say God is careful about how we think of him. He alone is God and we must not worship any other so-called god.
But there is a bad jealousy, meaning envying what someone else has or, as it is sometimes called, 'coveting' what someone else has. The Bible says: "Don't set your heart on anything that is your neighbour's." If someone is to get a bigger or better present than you may get at Christmas, don't be jealous — it will spoil your attitude towards the other person. That is not good. In one of his famous sayings, Shakespeare wrote: "O! Beware, my lord, of jealousy; it is the green-ey'd monster which doth mock the meat it feeds on." In other words it spoils everything, especially you or me if we are jealous. So let's be content and happy and look forward to a happy and blessed Christmas. It's not about presents after all!
Dear Lord, help me to set my heart on pleasing you most of all. Amen.