Love is not jealous


More of Pope Francis’s reflections on St Paul’s Hymn to Love:

 

“Saint Paul goes on to reject as contrary to love an attitude expressed by the verb zelói – to be jealous or envious.  This means that love has no room for discomfiture at another person’s good for-tune (cf. Acts 7:9; 17:5).  Envy is a form of sadness provoked by another’s prosperity; it shows that we are not concerned for the happiness of others but only with our own well-being.  Whereas love makes us rise above ourselves, envy closes us in on ourselves.  True love values the other person’s achievements.  It does not see him or her as a threat.  It frees us from the sour taste of envy.  It recognizes that everyone has different gifts and a unique path in life.  So it strives to discover its own road to happiness, while allowing others to find theirs.

In a word, love means fulfilling the last two commandments of God’s Law: “You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbour’s” (Ex 20:17).  Love inspires a sincere esteem for every human being and the recognition of his or her own right to happiness.  I love this person, and I see him or her with the eyes of God, who gives us everything “for our enjoyment” (1 Tim 6:17).  As a result, I feel a deep sense of happiness and peace.  This same deeply rooted love also leads me to reject the injustice whereby some possess too much and others too little.  It moves me to find ways of helping society’s outcasts to find a modicum of joy.  That is not envy, but the desire for equality.” Pope Francis “Amoris Laetitia, 95-96