In my last post I have touched on how you are perfectly and wonderfully made by God and you have a special place in this life you have been born into. He has a special plan for you.
You are unique.
See… Even though we know this, how many times do we still stumble? How many times do we still doubt it? How many times instead of focusing on our blessings we fall into looking at others and thinking with envy: “Their house is bigger than mine.”, “They have a better car.”, “They have better grades.”, “Their life looks so fun.” And etc.
I’m guilty of this myself. Trust me, we all do this sometimes. Or all the time 😦
We have so many things to be grateful for. We forget about it. We focus on what we do not have. This will always leave us miserable. We will not be able to be happy about our successes because someone else’s successes are bigger!
“Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with what I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learnt the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength”. (Philipians 4:11-13)
If you continue to be jealous you are on the highway to… discouragement. You start to wonder if all the promises of God are there for you. Jealousy will leave you bitter. It will also invade your heart.
“Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing.” (James 3:16)
Comparing yourself to others steals you joy!
As Christians we will have tests and trials. It is always easier to preach about it when we are not in any trouble. But when the trouble comes focus on the Lord.
Focus on His grace. Believe that trials will turn in to triumphs!
I had to face one trial very recently. I was taking part in competitive assessment and in result I was not successful. It didn’t even cross my mind that I wouldn’t be, but I wasn’t. Firstly I wanted to cry and I just felt the devil whispering to me how stupid I am, how unqualified I am, that there are OTHERS who succeeded yet I didn’t. I started praying straight away to God for help to not feel this way. The feeling did not go away easily. I needed to pray couple of times. I just kept trusting Him that it was not for me and now I am not worried. I know that whatever His plan is, it is better than I could ever think of. I am grateful for every opportunity to learn and improve myself. Every experience gives you a lesson. I thank God for working on me! Without God I would be so bitter about this failure, but instead I am happy for those who succeeded. It still had impact on me and I did compare myself to others and felt better that I am not the only one who failed. But I know how worse it would be before I turned to Christ. And I know that with every trial I will be stronger. Though I might not have passed that test I know by His grace I passed the trial of faith. God blessed me with better offer and turned my failure to success!
Just like Job, as Christians we will always face trials our faith, in one particular situation Job’s wife said caurse God and die (Job 2:9) but he held steadfast in the Lord. Stay Strong! Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Trying to compare yourself will only give you more unrest. Jesus is the way to true rest and trust me I found it from this little experience.
“Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
Satan knows our weakest point. He knows how to tempt us. He managed to deceive Eve even though she knew God. She saw him. She talked with him. We have faith in Him even though we don’t see him. Hence, I believe it is even easier to tempt us!
Do not let Satan do it.
Compare yourself to yourself only. What do I mean by this is you should only compare your own progress. Not somebody’s else. Your story is not their story. You do not know their circumstances, hard work and determination.
“Each of you must examine your own actions. Then you can be proud of your own accomplishments without comparing yourself to others. “
Exactly! Examine your own progress, your own work, and your own circumstances. If you see how far you have come that is a true satisfaction.
Let others inspire you with their hard work and determination. But remember that your paths are different and they have been designed by God.
We all have a need to be successful. But what is your motive?
Who are you trying to impress?
Am I saying this now to win the approval of people or God? Am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be Christ’s servant. (Galatians 1:10)
When you are born again your mind changes and it keeps changing because you start living for Christ. You grow with every scripture you read and meditate on. You want to please God not people. Who is higher than God? Your boss? Your professor?
There is none greater than God!
“If you want to boast, boast only about the LORD.” (2 Corinthians 10:17)
I love this verse. When you realize all you have is from God then all you successes are not yours, but His. Because you know that He is the one who gave you this talent, these abilities.
He is your strength. He is your motivation to keep going. He is your refuge.
We should strive to be more like Jesus and none else.
“Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.”(1 Corinthians 11:1)
It is better to use energy to discover what is meant for you rather than using it to compete for something that was never meant for you! It is such a distraction to live life of comparisons.
“Oh, don’t worry; we wouldn’t dare say that we are as wonderful as these other men who tell you how important they are! But they are only comparing themselves with each other, using themselves as the standard of measurement. How ignorant!” (2 Corinthians 10)
This is such a freedom. You do not have to compete with anyone. You have no rival and no equal. You are unique. You do not have to run any race. We are created in the image of God so it is not a surprise that there is absolutely no reason for competing with each other.
“For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters, but do not use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbour as yourself”. (Galatians 5:13-15)
In Christ all our sinful nature was nailed to the cross. We are living by the Spirit now, hence we should not be provoked or provoke one another and be jealous of one another.
Holy Spirit does not produce jealousy as one of the fruits.
There is so much wisdom in scriptures that it never stops to amuse me!
We can apply so much to our lives from this wisdom.
We are so blessed that we have Bible. We have guidance and security in God’s words 24/7.
You are the gracious God who has strengthens us in our weaknesses and sins. You are full of forgiveness and full of love. Please renew my heart to not be jealous of my neighbour but instead be full of love like you. Renew my mind to help me grow and do great things in your name. Amen!