24 Aug Comparing Ourselves to Others
Ok, this topic is something I truly believe we’ve all struggled with. I can’t count the many times I’ve compared myself to others. Was I smarter, prettier, more “Christian”? Ugh. This doesn’t even sound nice. But, it’s true. Or how about when we compare ourselves to others, believing that we deserve their blessing more than they? Or something as simple as, “No, I make that meal WAY better than she.”
How about the fact that ANY TIME we involve ourselves with this comparison game, we ignore the Truth when, “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” (Genesis 1:31, NIV)
It’s easy to get all caught up in this world of who did it better, wore it better or made it better. You see this line of thought everywhere: social media, television shows, movies…you name it. But, what does this do to us? It doesn’t edify anyone. Someone will always be put down when comparing, whether it is your neighbor or even yourself.
Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” (ESV) If each person were to apply this to his/her life, you would have this chain reaction of kindness, respect and genuine happiness for one another. Our mindsets would no longer be bound by what the entertainment industry predisposes us to believe about ourselves and others. We would no longer be their puppets for their products. Think about it. You see this precedence of what the definition of physical beauty and fashion should be, depending on the season. And somehow, we follow it. And if an individual is not wearing what’s “in”, well..someone may smirk at the outfit or look down at that person without a single thought. We’ve seen this in school settings, in the workplace, even in church! I remember countless times dreading the next day at school because I was poor and didn’t have trendy clothing. Children would look me up and down, as if I had the “cooties” because I couldn’t afford the newest fashions. As a child, I also remember being told at a church youth outing, “Beggars can’t be choosers” when I had noticed other children were given juice with their lunches and I was given water. I was a “sponsored” child. So, I guess I didn’t deserve the juice. You know, having more money means more respect.
Do you see what I mean?!
We tend to treat those with similar attributes better than we do those who aren’t the same. We want to fit in with the “cool group”, even as adults. And we find this group by comparing ourselves and others. But, if the Creator of the ENTIRE universe saw what He created was “very good”, how dare we put ourselves in His position to choose who belongs in that “very good” category and who doesn’t! We are not God. Good thing, because we would have made a horrible mess with all of that power.
“Do not conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2, NIV)
Come on, guys. We don’t have to follow the man-made (im)moral patterns that run rampant in this society. Let’s start exercising our minds by continuing to adhere it to how God sees things. We are so imperfect and so flawed, it’s unbelievable. Therefore, our opinions shouldn’t hold so much prominence in how we treat others. In fact, we shouldn’t trust our opinions too much. We aren’t perfect. We make mistakes. Those opinions will most likely contain our erroneous thoughts.
So…let’s stop comparing ourselves and others. We aren’t qualified for it. And the One who is gave His stamp of approval on ALL He created a long time ago. Let us be reminded of that stamp before we allow our thoughts to begin comparing others. Nobody wins with comparisons. But, we ALL win when we are reminded of God’s opinion about us.