How To Overcome Comparison
I wish I was a better _______.
Now, I know each person reading this has had a thought similar to this one before. You can fill that blank in with pretty much any word you’d like. Whether its a better person, wife, mother, friend, runner, teacher, or business person, we so often measure our worth by the things that we do and we get so disappointed when we feel like we’ve come up short in comparison to others.
If there is one area of life that I’m an expert in, it’s comparison. The silly this is that I know I struggle with this, and I’m fully aware of how destructive a habit it is. It’s something that I’ve been struggling with lately and I have to bring to the Lord daily.
So today, I thought I’d share with you something that really stuck with me and I remind myself of when I start comparing my life to others.
I was in cross-country in high school and on summer days we would be asked to do workouts on our own. So, I joined the local gym and I was ready to get to work.
One day I showed up, and got on the treadmill like I normally would have. I saw a girl about two treadmills over who looked like she was killing the running game. Not only was she going fast but her form was amazing! So, I promptly decided that I wanted to do the same. I turned the treadmill up to a speed that was way out of my comfort zone and started my run. After an embarrassingly short amount of time, I was out of breath and my workout had just started.
It was then that this girl hopped off her treadmill and went home. Her workout was done! It instantly hit me, that we were two different people, running two different races, and were at two different points in our workouts. I instantly felt the consequences of comparing myself to her. In my efforts to be like her, I effectively messed up my own workout.
This day has stuck in my head a lot. When I compare myself to other women, I remind myself that we are two different people, who are on two different paths. This person might be further along in her journey, whereas I might just be starting.
The bottom line is that it doesn’t really matter if you're better at this or that because it’s not about what we do. What matters is what HE did for us. Which begs the question, are we more focused on ourselves than Jesus?
That question hits me deep and reminds me that comparison is a thief of joy. Because it distracts me from the only One who can bring true and lasting joy into my life. It takes my eyes off of my Savior and places my attention on people who I have no business comparing myself to.
Friends, don’t let comparison steal your joy. Run the race that is marked out for you and run at the pace of grace!
Galatians 1:10 (NIV) Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.