Friday, March 1, 2013

Faithful Fridays ~ The Comparison Game

Hi everyone!  I'm sorry this post wasn't on before now....we were without internet yesterday, and though we got a lot done elsewhere, I wasn't able to get any "internet stuff" done.  :)

Faithful Fridays is a weekly "meme" hosted on my blog.  I made it so that Christians could have one day out of the week (Friday) to share something from their Christian walk on their blog.  If you'd like to participate, write your post, grab the button from the Faithful Fridays page on my blog (so that it will link back here), and come link up at the bottom of this post!  :)


So, today's post is a little different from what I usually tend to write about.

Because I usually write about something that the Lord has taught me or impressed upon me lately, or sometimes a struggle I've had that's been resolved.

But I never want to post about the struggles I haven't resolved, because I figure that if the sort of "reason" I'm writing these posts is to help other Christians....what can sharing my problems do?

But maybe it can help.  Maybe one of you has dealt with the same thing or is dealing with it now, and maybe sharing my thoughts can help.

I am really bad about comparing myself to other people.  I hold myself to a really high standard and if I feel like I'm messing up even the slightest bit, I get really, really upset because I'm desperately afraid of falling off the path the Lord wants me to follow.  It's one of my biggest fears.

I want to be able to do everything.  I look around at other bloggers and want to have five hundred followers, and have a really good blog design, and come up with clever, classy posts.  I see my artistic friends and want to be able to pick up the pencil and draw really well.  I see my friends that have finished several books and feel a bit ashamed of my writing.  I want to be musically talented and play the guitar, piano, and sing.  I want to keep everything balanced and listen to the right kind of music, watch the right movies, and not get caught up in the things of this world.  

My mama and I (we're very close) have agreed that if she ever sees me "falling out of line" and not acting the way I should as a Christian girl, she'll let me know.  Even though I want her to tell me when I'm straying off the path, I still get really upset when she brings it to my attention.  I kind of just expect myself to be close to perfect, and when I fail, I beat myself up over it.

It's annoying and it makes me feel like I'm "stupid" or like I "have problems," but it's me.  :)  

But I think this is a form of ungratefulness.  I'm not being thankful to God.  Many people I know have worse "problems" than I do, whether they be spiritual, emotional, physical, or whatever.  I guess I don't see others' problems, and because of that, from my perspective, my problems are big, whereas to someone else, they're small.

I've heard it said that if we all threw our problems into a pile with everyone else's, we'd grab ours back instantly.   :)

Also, I think this "comparison game" that I (and, I believe, many other girls) tend to play is a "symptom" of not focusing solely on Jesus.  Maybe I'm letting my eyes wander off Him, and I start to sink because of it.  I mean, one of my favorite Bible verses--my sort of "life verse"--is Hebrews 12:1-2, but do I really live by it all the time? 

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
-Hebrews 12:1-2 

I've learned that the only person I need to compare myself to is Jesus, because He's the one I'm following.

I compare myself to everyone--my friends, other bloggers, other writers, people in my family, even to what my mom was like when she was my age.

It can drive me crazy!

But in the midst of it, God speaks to me. 

I opened my devotional, Jesus Calling (by Sarah Young), yesterday to read this:

"Stop judging and evaluating yourself, for this is not your role.  Above all, stop comparing yourself with other people.  This produces feelings of pride or inferiority, sometimes a mixture of both.  I lead each of My children along a path that is uniquely tailor-made for him or her.  Comparing is not only wrong; it is also meaningless.  

Don't look for affirmation in the wrong places: your own evaluations or those of other people.  The only source of real affirmation is My unconditional Love.  Many believers perceive Me as an unpleasable Judge, angrily searching out their faults and failures.  Nothing could be farther from the truth!  I died for your sins so that I might clothe you in My garments of salvation.  This is how I see you: radiant in My robe of righteousness.  When I discipline you, it is never in anger or disgust; it is to prepare you for face-to-Face fellowship with Me throughout all eternity.  Immerse yourself in My loving presence.  Be receptive to My affirmation, which flows continually from the throne of grace."

"My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in."
-Proverbs 3:11-12

It made me feel a little better, and it also kind of just made me look up and go, "Thanks, God.  You knew what I needed."  :)

So, I hope this helped you somehow today.  :)

God bless you and have a great day!
Joy :)


Tammy ~ Country Girl at Home ~ said...

Joy......You are perfect and special just the way you are! I love you! There's no one else I would want you to be like....but you! God made you YOU and it's a beautiful you! Loved your candid post!

But you're not the only one that does this....we just have to work at it constantly. Our culture doesn't help with this.

Love you! 10!

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