Comparison: Thief of joy. Destroyer of relationships. Contentment killer.
It was an ordinary day. I was enjoying my coffee and quiet time with God before my children got up. Before my husband awoke, before I had even let me dog out. My day had yet to even begin.
I was feeling great! God had really spoken to my heart through the verses I was reading and I felt empowered to face my day and live for Him. Inspired to share from my rooftop what He had revealed to me that morning.
I was feeling so good that I decided to hop on Facebook early, excited to see the ways in which God’s Spirit was moving that day. Then I saw it.
My friend posted about a huge blessing that her family had just received… A blessing that I desperately wanted.
Envy washed over me.
Shame overshadowed me.
Instead of seeing her excited post as a reason to celebrate the way God had moved in my sweet friend’s life, all I could see was yet another reminder of what I had been so fervently praying for and was still being denied. And I felt like God was rubbing it in my face that He still hadn’t blessed me with that desire of my heart. So I closed my laptop feeling defeated…
My joy, confidence, and contentment were stolen in the blink
of an eye. Just 2 minutes before I read that post I had felt God’s favor. I had felt joy in what He was doing in my life. In fact, I had jumped on Facebook for the expressed purpose of seeing and celebrating the ways that God was moving my circle and blessing others.
Desperate to not spend another day defeated, drained, or depressed I reopened my bible in an attempt to discover why God was holding back from me.
What have I done Lord?
Why is that blessing that I have been desperately praying for always just out of my reach?
What lesson are you teaching me?
I found myself frantically turning to my verses of encouragement, comfort, and assurance. Searching for that peace I had felt just moments before. That’s when I found James 3:13-18.
…Wherever there is jealousy there is disorder and evil of every kind. Ouch!
7 Ways to Break Free from Comparison
But how do we break free? How to we kick comparison, jealousy, envy, covetousness, and discontentment to the curb?
Let’s see what God has to say on it:
- Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. Galatians 6:4 NLT
- And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28 NLT
- Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 1 Peter 4:10 NIV
- Be joyful because you have hope. Be patient when
trouble comes, and pray at all times. Romans 12:12 NCV
- Serving God does make us very rich, if we are satisfied
with what we have. 1 Timothy 6:6 NCV
- Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Philippians 4:6-7 MSG
- This vision is for a future time. It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled. If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed. Habakkuk 2:3
God instructs us to pay attention to our own work, faithful using the gifts that He has specifically given us to bring Him glory. God assures us that He will faithfully provide for us. His timing is perfect.