Comparison is a frequent source of discontent. When I get frustrated with myself and my life, I can often track this feeling down to a source of comparison. I see someone else and what they have or what they’re doing, and I feel like I need to have that or do that. Sometimes we believe lies that are so deep down we don’t recognize them at first. One such lie goes like this: You have to be a compilation of everyone else’s best.
You hear him play piano and you feel like you need to play piano that well, and if you’re not practicing for hours each day you’re obviously doing something wrong. You see the 100% she got on her final and beat yourself up because you got a B.
At least that’s how it often goes for me.
Somewhere along the line my Mom stopped me from going down this path of yuckiness (thanks, Mom!) by asking something very simple: why? Why do I feel like I need to be a mixture of everyone else’s best?
Had I realized that the girl who got an A didn’t play piano, and that the perfect singer girl didn’t always ace all her classes? Do I realize that everyone is made for different things and to work at different paces?
Just because someone excels in one area doesn’t mean everyone has to. God gave you a specific race to run and a specific pace at which to run it. Your race isn’t supposed to match up to everyone else’s. It should be different, ‘cause it’s your custom life designed by the Designer of Life Himself. Let this soak in: “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…” (Hebrews 12:1)
In a devotional I own by Holley Gerth (Check her out! She’s amazing!), she points out that God’s word specifically says, “the race marked out for us.” For us. Get it? We each have a specific calling that is unique, and we can’t compare because we aren’t supposed to be clones of each other.
In my life, I simply needed permission to not be the best at everything. I felt like my worth depended on my actions. That’s simply not true.
So this is me giving myself permission not to excel at everything.
This is me telling myself it’s okay to take a break sometimes.
Will you tell yourself the same thing?
Sometimes sitting quietly in the Lord’s presence is the most productive thing we can do, because it enables us to be kingdom-minded with kingdom goals.
You aren’t going to be the best at everything.
And that’s perfectly okay.
Because God has different goals for you than the world does. The world’s idea of “best” might be a far cry from God’s best for you.
So my challenge for both of us is simple. Let’s ditch comparison and embrace enough-ness in God. Let him be our definer. Let’s realize that we don’t have to do everything; we only have to do what God has called us to do. And what God’s called us to do, he’ll enable us to do. So…what does your race track look like today?