Everyone has their moments. I think my moments come when I am insecure about something or if I am trying something new. I look around me to see what others are doing and check to see if I’m doing it right or not. Sometimes I know what I’m doing and I look to see if others are doing the same way or not. But whether I am insecure or over-confident, comparing myself to others has never panned out well for me.
Comparison leads me into one of two ditches. If I am doing well then it leads to pride. If I am doing poorly it leads to condemnation. I can feel good about who I am and deceive myself into thinking I am better than I really am. Or I can feel defeated, thinking I’ll never amount to much; always striving, always reaching but never good enough.
Comparison kills. It bring an unjust decision for or against you without all the facts. And though we all want to come out ahead, feeling good about ourselves, it never lasts. We will always find someone better than us that we cannot overcome. And if we put our confidence in lateral comparisons set our hearts on an ever-shifting sea of uncertainty. We rise and fall with every wave of envy and joy, eventually making our hearts sick.
I’ve been sea-sick too many times. So for me, this is how I decided to move forward.
God didn’t make a mistake.
First, God made me just the way He wanted me to be — not necessarily the way I wanted to be. I am His creation and am only responsible to perform up to my design, in the grace of God. We all are to grow and mature as believers but my gifts and callings are not the same as the next person. I cannot be them and they cannot be me. Furthermore our talents and gifts are not distributed evenly. My musical talent may be a 5 while someone else may be a 10. I am only responsible to cultivate my gift to its full potential — even if it’s just a 5. If we can be content with our design and do the best we can for Him, no matter the call, we can be confident He will be well-pleased with us.
Humility is the key.
Second, humility gives perspective and placement. We have been redeemed from incredible treachery. Remembering our former state before Christ in light of our present blessings, we can be confident that whatever we have is from Him. And because our gifts didn’t come from us then we can choose to steward them for God’s glory. In His goodness we receive rewards on earth and in heaven for using our gifts for Him — which lasts for eternity.
In the end I can breathe easy, knowing that God loves me completely, while I work out my salvation with fear and trembling, and I am always a son of the King and not the King Himself. I can relax in His love for me while reaching for the highest I can be in the grace of God. Micah 6:8 resonates within my heart as I write this: “He has shown you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.