Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Comparison Syndrome

"We will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original" - Gal 5:26 (msg)

I know this verse is true, yet I still catch myself doing it...comparing myself to others. I compare myself with other women. I compare my marriage with those around me (and those fictional "too-good-to-be-true" relationships I read about). I compare my parenting skills. And the list goes on and on. I find that the less I compare myself with others, the less ammunition Satan has to use against me, and the more content I am with my life.

In light of this struggle, I found this passage about parenting to be really encouraging. "You need to know that God has different expectations for different parents. Jesus makes it clear (in Luke 12:48) that, while all of us are guilty, God does consider our background when deciding the degree of guilt: "From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." (Thomas)

I grew up with loving parents, but they lived in different houses. The majority of the time it was just me and my dad. And while I went to church on Sundays, it was more something that we did rather than a living faith. So here I am trying to manage a family and provide spiritual training, when I've never had it modeled for me. Is it any wonder why I feel inadequate when I compare myself to people who come from a more stable background? I need to remember that God knows me inside and out. He knows where I've come from and where I'm going. I am not expected to be like anyone else...only to seek His wisdom and be obedient to what He tells me to do.

"Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that...Don't compare yourself with others." - Gal 6:4 (msg)

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