It has been my pleasure, recently, to review several excellent studies for women, and this one continues the trend. The Envy of Eve: Finding Contentment in a Covetous World by Melissa Kruger came to me at a very appropriate time. In this season of our life, with small children and long hours of work for Jonathan and the temporary nature of seminary relationships, it’s easy for me to excuse my covetousness as “understandable restlessness” instead of the sinful discontent it really is.
Laid out in two parts, Mrs. Kruger first explores what covetousness really is and points us to Christ as the only solution. She follows this up with five chapters on specific areas in which we covet: money and possessions, romantic relationships, family and friendship, seasons and circumstances, and giftedness and abilities.Rooted in scripture and grace, I found myself lovingly chastised, and always pointed to hope in Christ.
I find myself mulling over some of her points as I go about my daily life. The general thesis of the book is this: “Our core problem in coveting is not our attitude or the circumstances we find ourselves in; our core problem is our unbelief in some characteristic of God.” This is ringing true with me this week, but I had never contemplated the correlation. The times in my life I have most fallen to covetousness are the times I least believed in God’s provision, faithfulness and goodness. Another powerful truth that has been rattling around in my heart and mind is the idea that we cannot love someone if we are coveting anything of theirs. I have long been uncomfortable with the common response, “. . . must be nice . . .” when one hears of another’s blessings; but Melissa Kruger has helped me to see that this is actually hatred fueled by covetousness. Coveting is, as Kruger points out, the antithesis to the command to love one another as ourselves.
Just as I found myself going back to my last book long after the review was written, I know I will be coming back and re-reading The Envy of Eve for a long time. I highly recommend it for a women’s bible study .