Covet, not exactly a word we use every day. In fact, you seldom hear it without the rest of the commandment...you shall not. I am always interested in the difference between 'shall', 'will', and 'may' when it come to legal language. When it comes to the commandment, it is always shall with clarity.
You (the people of God) shall not covet. Not property, not relationships, not identity, not abilities, not wealth, not attractiveness, not vehicles, not homes...you name it, we are to keep our hands and minds to ourselves. Sometimes coveting happens with our hearts, sometimes it takes place in our minds, and to the extreme we might even participate in a little shoplifting!
Did you ever get caught shoplifting as a kid? Do you remember that paranoid feeling as you looked around to see if anyone was watching? That feeling in your gut was a sure sign that you instinctively understood the nature of coveting and the personal impact that comes to play if we are caught. But it is not just about getting caught. It is also about our heart and soul. It is the ache in your heart when you know you have done something that is outside the will and design of God.
As adults, we 'shoplift' when we see the new car in our neighbors driveway. Or have dinner at the home of a friend and experience desire for the things we see. It happens every time we evaluate ourselves by using someone else as the standard.
Do you remember God saying, Be holy because I am holy? Be my person. Use me and my holiness as the standard. Do not covet because I, the Lord your God, have great things in store for you.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness...that beatitude is the opposite side of covet!
Lent will soon be leading us into Holy Week with unique opportunities for worship. I pray that you will worship well, pray faithfully, and serve significantly so the Lord can fully bless you at Easter!