Monday, August 1, 2011

There's Just No Comparison

Almost too pretty to look at, my eyes strain to soak up all the color, all the texture, all the blazing glory they behold. What a profusion!  Petals arrayed in joyous circumference reaching sun-ward like arms all lifted in praise to the Creator, the One who breathed stars into the sky and spoke into being the very sun they reach for.

Dazzling in that glitter and gold California sun, each blossom is a thing of beauty, singly, all by itself, unique in every way.

You know what?

Flowers don't compare themselves to other flowers.

They simply bloom.

This whole comparison thing seems to be a uniquely human affliction, and I am not immuned.

"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

When the flowers preach their sermon, will I listen?  Will I, with abandon, just turn my face skyward and lift hands and heart and life to God and just be who He made me to be . . . WITHOUT comparing?

Can I just sing the song of praise without comparing my voice to the person next to me or the person I'd like to be? Can I simply sing for sheer joy and for His glory?

Can I just write the words that come, with exactly the skill that I have, without comparing my work to all of you beautiful writers out there, or the writer I hope to be? Can I simply write what is in me to write today?

Whether it is out of an internal competitiveness, the perceived pressure to perform, or our desire for significance, we all tend to compare ourselves to others. I don't know about you, but I never find it to be a rewarding exercise. Comparing myself to someone who I think is better than I am at something leaves me discouraged, and comparing myself to someone and feeling superior just saddles me with my own pride--either way, I've got trouble.

The only person I can legitimately compare myself to is myself . . . the me I was yesterday.  Am I aiming higher today than yesterday? At the end of today will I have grown or progressed past where I finished yesterday?
I don't have to be,
nor can I be,
as good as,
or better than,
anyone else on earth!
I long instead, to be my own best self, relying on my Father, growing daily, increasing in wisdom and godliness, and abounding in the love that flows through me from my great and gracious God. 

Not only do we serve a God who is truly, completely INCOMPARABLE, but we are loved by a Father who looks at us, knowing that among His children, there's just no comparison!
"Do you realize that God doesn't compare you to anybody . . . because He KNOWS there's nobody else like you!" --Charles Stanley
How will you begin to minimize the comparisons and simply believe God about you?

Joining Ann Voskamp in counting His graces for her Multitudes on Mondays
I hope you'll join in if you haven't already!
In the counting of the endless gifts I say with C. S. Lewis,
"This also is Thou!"

656. My business license, Peet's buttons, my Dickies decal, paper snowflakes, my kids' artwork from elementary school, an autographed picture, and notes from home--all the stuff that makes my desk "mine."
657. Sleepy sweet kids on sleep-in summer mornings
659. Email from sister-in-law with just two words, "U ROCK!" 
660. First Philly Cheese Steak sandwich ever!
661. Getting back on track using the CalorieCount website--a step in the right direction
662. Good news for Drummer Boy at the dentist--whew!
663. Seeing a good friend at her husband's concert, receiving a free CD from them, and fun memories
664. Cushy comfort of new shoes and relief from pain!
665. It works!!  Finally, access to my old computer's hard drive and everything is there!
666. Old shows like Rifleman that remind us who we used to be, who we should be
667. Calling home, not once, not twice, but three times in one day, all for good reasons!
668. Plane ticket ordered!
669. Summer fog that burns away to reveal blue sky
670. Touch of Heaven in the prayers of my family for me 

Joining Michelle DeRusha for:

Joining L.L. Barkat for:
On In Around button

Joining Laura Boggess for:

and joining Jen and her Sisterhood:

A heartfelt thank you to these generous bloggers
who make these communities available!


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