COMPARING OURSELVES WITH OTHERS…
THE TICKING TIME BOMB INSIDE OF OUR MINDS.
Comparing ourselves to others, starts as a normal, healthy way of development
that began when we were children. As children and even into out adolescent
years, watching and imitating was the natural solution to learning how
to do things, like throwing a baseball, learning to tie our shoes, or perhaps
how to develop friendships. It’s only natural as a child to learn that kind
of behavior, because we needed to imitate others to figure out how things
worked or ultimately, didn’t work.
Given this theory, it teaches us to look at those around us to determine
our own way of feeling things, thinking, acting, imitating. As a child, we looked
to our parents or perhaps older siblings or peers. We wanted to be just like them,
sometimes to the point we would wound our own pride if we didn’t measure
up the same.
As adults, what do we do? The same thing. It’s a learned behavior. The older
we get, we start to look around at others and wonder why they have it
so much easier? Why are they thriving financially while others aren’t sure
where their next meal will come from. This type of behavior often leads into
a form of self destruction, I like to call, “Keeping Up With the Jones.”
Don’t get me wrong, good things can come from observing the lives and choices of others. It’s not unhealthy to have someone you look up to or aspire to become like, such as a mentor, a source of inspiration. However, I contemplate very often, if our ultra competitive tendencies in society leads to us forming our identity based only on comparisons to the people we are around?
The daily competition with others, leads to not only feelings of no self worth, but also to segregation, isolation, failure, depression, feelings of inadequacy and sometimes we begin questioning our own identity. Comparison gives us a reason to be happy, or sad, without really focusing on the real problem in our lives and why we do the things we do that lead to self destruction.
The world is continuously drawing our mind to think of the things that should be ours, creating in us a sense of entitlement. Then Satan points us to those who have attained the things we hope for, pushing us farther down the road of dispair and feelings of inadequacy and insecurity. Sometimes leaving us questioning God. If we find ourselves in a position questioning God, we need to remind ourselves that the enemy is very real and is at the root of it all. Satan comes to kill, steal and destroy. Daily, we must choose to put on our ARMOR OF GOD to protect ourselves from the enemy.
Focus on the Lord when you are tempted to compare yourself with others. David, who God called a man after his own heart, was given armor to wear when he was going to fight Goliath. The armor was too large for his small frame, but David didn’t go searching for different armor so that he could replicate others who went out in battle. Instead, David’s focus was on God’s character, His promise of victory, not on his opponent. God, who had helped David in the past, would continue to help him as he faced Goliath. All of us have had experiences of trusting God. We need to remind ourselves of his faithfulness.
Ultimately we need to realize that, the distraction of other people’s seemingly perfect lives, keep us from enjoying our own. If you don’t stop the cycle, you’ll never get to enjoy what treasures God has in store for you and your live IN HIS WILL.
I am very guilty of comparing myself to others. Not just from a wealth status standpoint, but in the most recent past, I have compared my walk with Christ with other’s walk with Christ. I have come to learn that nothing good can come from that. Everyone’s walk with Christ is unique and different, perfect just the way He created it. It’s time we, (I myself, especially) stop the comparisons and start giving thanks. Don’t look to the stars for answers or for worth, but instead, look to the maker of the stars.
Until the next time-
I am Beautifully Broken…But Not Defeated!