This week I have had to venture on the roads. I would rather miss driving at this time of year, just as I would prefer to miss going to shopping centres. Whether on the road, shopping centre carpark, or the shops themselves the absence of consideration is obvious. As I thought on it, a strange ‘light bulb moment’ went off in my mind. On the road, other drivers covet the space your vehicle is taking; in the shopping centre carpark where parking spaces are hard to find you might find a line of vehicles whose drivers covet the space you have.
Covet is an old-fashioned word
What does it mean?
“To desire wrongfully, inordinately, or without due regard for the rights of other:
Example: To covet another’s property.”
The definition by the way is less than 140 characters, including spaces. I checked.
Now I will expand on that definition in more than 140 characters.
(Twitter has increased the character limit to 280 but I will go over that.)
In the Bible covet is mentioned in the tenth commandment. “You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbour.” (Abridged version.)
If you want a New Testament version, well, I think Jesus’ summary of the ten given in two commandments covers it.
“And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Covet is a strange word for lack of consideration.
Well, covet has another meaning in the dictionary “to wish for, especially eagerly:
Example: He won the prize they all coveted.”
When it all boils down to a basic set of words, it is self-centeredness.
Why would I say that? Because if you peel the layers back like an onion, you might find it is putting your needs before those of others.
If you leapfrog in and out of the traffic to get that little bit ahead. Chances are I will join you at the next set of traffic lights.
My nerves will be calmer.
If you are charging at me with your shopping trolley expecting me to get out of your way quickly, I won’t be able to. I have to take a portable oxygen concentrator when I go to the shops, we cannot dodge a ‘speeding trolley.’
I will stop and hope you see me.
So, do not covet the space on the road, the carpark bay, or try to intimidate others out of your way in the shopping centres. Love your ‘neighbour’ as yourself.
We are all on this planet together, so we are neighbours.
Slow down, it might save your life.