“Comparison is the thief of joy.” It’s a statement that I’ve seen a lot lately. And I’m glad I have. It’s an area where I’ve really struggled in the past, so that phrase being shared so much lately is a good reminder to me to not compare.
Yesterday I had the beginnings of a “comparison mindset” and God gripped my heart. First it was just the reminder that comparing can steal my joy. But then He went deeper. I felt him whisper to my spirit, “You’re measuring yourself against a ruler that I do not use. As long as you use that ruler, you’ll never be satisfied or fulfilled. You’ll never measure up.”
I just froze as I let those words work through my spirit. I had this mental image of trying to measure a large room by using a kitchen measuring cup. It’s JUST NOT POSSIBLE. And it’s not possible to measure my growth, my success, my ambitions, my dreams, my parenting, my marriage against anyone else’s. Can others inspire me? Yes! Can others help me grow? Of course! Can others encourage me along the journey? Absolutely!
But I can’t measure myself against anything other than the ruler God is using. I feel that God is showing me that not only is comparison the thief of joy, but it’s also the thief of contentment and fulfillment. When I try to measure up to the world’s standards or a friend’s standards or any other perceived standards that I see in front of me…and I let that be where I seek my joy and fulfillment…I’ll never find what I need. Because it’s not there. None of those things can ever be found anywhere other than Christ.
What are you measuring yourself against? Or maybe the better question is what are you comparing yourself to? Stop right now and ask God how He is measuring you right now. Focus in on how He sees you in your life’s journey. Let go of the standards that you think others hold you to or that you’re trying to measure up to. Chase all that God has for you. Measure yourself against the ruler that He has for your life. And drink in the joy and fulfillment that can only HE can give.