Success only flourishes in perseverance -- ceaseless, restless perseverance.
--Baron Manfred Von Richtofen

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

LDS Writer Blogfest: Avoiding Envy

Kayleen Hamblin of Kayleen's Creation Corner invited me to participate in the 3rd annual LDS Writer Blogfest. I chose one of the talks from our recent general conference to blog about. It is from Elder Jeffrey R. Holland about the Savior's parable of the laborer's in the vineyard, found in Matthew 20:1-15. I chose this talk since it concerns an issue that I think is relevant to us writers. Envy. We may not talk about it, but I know from personal experience how easy it can be to feel envious of the success of others in this business. Don't get me wrong. I love this writing community. It is so supportive and terrific. But I have felt those envious feelings stirring in me on more than one occasion. Here's what Elder Holland had to say:

Brothers and sisters, there are going to be times in our lives when someone else gets an unexpected blessing or receives some special recognition. May I plead with us not to be hurt—and certainly not to feel envious—when good fortune comes to another person? We are not diminished when someone else is added upon. We are not in a race against each other to see who is the wealthiest or the most talented or the most beautiful or even the most blessed. The race we are really in is the race against sin, and surely envy is one of the most universal of those.

Furthermore, envy is a mistake that just keeps on giving. Obviously we suffer a little when some misfortune befalls us, but envy requires us to suffer all good fortune that befalls everyone we know! What a bright prospect that is—downing another quart of pickle juice every time anyone around you has a happy moment! To say nothing of the chagrin in the end, when we find that God really is both just and merciful, giving to all who stand with Him “all that he hath,”2 as the scripture says. So lesson number one from the Lord’s vineyard: coveting, pouting, or tearing others down does not elevate your standing, nor does demeaning someone else improve your self-image. So be kind, and be grateful that God is kind. It is a happy way to live.

So true! That really touched me when I heard it. I don't think I have a huge problem with envy, but I know I've felt it at times for sure. And I am happy for all of your successes. We're all in this together, my friends!

Read the entire talk here.

Go check out the other entries!
Amanda Sowards
Ben Spendlove
Britanny Larsen
Cami Checketts
Charity Bradford
Danyelle Ferguson
Giselle Abreu
Julia Keanini
Julie Coulter Bellon
Kasey Tross
Kayeleen Hamblin
Kelly Bryson
Krista Van Dolzer
Laura Johnston
Melanie Standord
Rachelle Christensen
Rebecca Belliston
Sierra Gardner
Stephanie Worlton


Charity Bradford said...

I was thinking the same thing when I heard this talk! So many of my blogging buddies are catching agents and sometimes it's hard to just be happy for them without wondering "why not me?"

It might be slightly different from envy, but I think it could be another step in that direction.

tiffany said...

thanks for posting this its a great reminder not to be envyous im so not envious of you im so excited and happy for all that you have gotten recently and in the past your accomplishments have affected my life for the better i get to brag about my sister all the time and im glad i get too. so thanks for all your hard work that i get to brag about

L.T. Elliot said...

I loved this talk. I rewound my DVR several times so I could transcribe certain parts of it that I just really needed to hear. And isn't it so true? The "pie" doesn't get any smaller just because someone else gets a piece. ;)

Krista Van Dolzer said...

Great post, Angie. Elder Holland's talk was one of my favorites, too. (It often is.) I especially liked that line about pickle juice:)

Kasey @ The Beautiful Thrifty Life said...

Yes, I loved this talk! Maybe it's because I'm the eternal optimist, but whenever someone I know has good fortune, I feel like it just means that I'm getting closer to good fortune and it's bound to happen for me any minute. But, I'll admit, I do have those moments of envy and this was good to remember. :-)

Glad I could come visit your blog as part of the blogfest!

KaseyQ said...

P.S. I'm your newest follower! And if you haven't come to see us at Mormon Mommy Writers yet (another blog where I contribute) please do so! We love to have more ladies join our little family. (

Shallee said...

I loved this talk! Thanks for the reminder about curbing envy.

Lo said...

This talk was very touching to me too! I love Elder Holland's talks. Great review! Go LDS Writer Blogfest! New follower ;)

Kayeleen Hamblin said...

I blogged on this talk too. It was really personal for me. So often, we get caught up in what someone else is doing that we forget what we are doing or have accomplished. Jealousy robs of our change to be happy with ourselves. Thanks for joining the fest!

Julia K said...

I actually thought about talking about Elder Holland's talk also :) I love that he spoke so bluntly about not envying...thanks for the reminder :)

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

I loved this talk, too. So many great things to think about.

Angie said...

Tiffany, thanks. I love you!

Kasey, that's a wonderful attitude! Thanks so much for following!

Hi there, Lo. Thanks for following! I love Elder Hollands talks to. =)

Julia, I love how he speaks so bluntly on any topic. Thanks for stopping by!

Thanks, Julie!

I will be hitting all the entries when I get back home tomorrow or the next day. Be patient with me!

Sierra Gardner said...

This was a fantastic talk. It can be really hard to fight back envy when it looks like things are working for everyone else. This was a great reminder to remember what's important.

Kelly Bryson said...

I love pickles, and I think as a little girl I actually drank a quart of pickle juice. Not good. I love that image- I applied it to writing when I heard it as well! Thanks for this great post!

Melanie Stanford said...

I missed this talk! I don't think I really suffer with a lot of envy but every once in awhile I get a pang, like ah, I wish I had that. This is a great talk.