"Keeping Pace or Keeping Peace"
No matter what you’re tempted to compare, there will always be someone with more than you and there will always be someone with less. Whether you compare husbands or hair, there will always be someone else to envy and someone envying you.
So you have a choice: either keep pace or keep peace.
Comparison will tempt you to keep pace, to accumulate more. But the parable in today’s reading illustrates that accumulating more is a worthless pursuit if what you’re accumulating isn’t put to good use for God’s purposes. The wise choice is peace with what God has entrusted to you.
In some areas, he’s given you more than others—maybe you’re a talented singer or gifted writer. In other ways, you may come up short—perhaps you had a challenging childhood or disappointing marriage. But God doesn’t ask you to change what you’ve been given. He asks you to use what you’ve been given.
Whether a lot or a little, what you have is less important than what you do with what you have.
TRY THIS: We all have a surplus of something. Brainstorm one area in which God has given you a surplus and commit to one thing you can do today to better use it for him.
Adapted From: Comparison Trap - You Version
1 Timothy 6:17-19
"Out Loud and On Purpose"
In the depths of the comparison trap, it’s really hard to follow today’s advice. But these two action steps are the only way out: celebrate and leverage.
Imagine that your colleague gets a promotion. Before she’s even finished telling you her good news, insecurity is whispering that you must not have been good enough. And envy is reminding you of her fancy new title and pay raise.
So how do you quiet these lies? You celebrate her out loud and on purpose. You speak words—even if they don’t match your thoughts—that applaud her. There’s something powerful and liberating about celebrating the success of other people. It’s like popping a balloon filled with all the insecurity and envy of comparison.
And then you should look for ways to leverage what God has given you. Like a recipe’s list of ingredients, God has given you talents and treasures in specific amounts for a reason. How can you put them to good use? Even if your house isn’t as big and fancy as your friend’s, how can you best use yours? Even if you’re not as eloquent as you’d like, can you still offer encouraging words to a friend?
Celebrating what God has given others and leveraging what God has given you may not come naturally. But see for yourself if these two action steps aren’t an instant antidote to the comparison trap.
TRY THIS: Who in your life has received good news lately? Celebrate her out loud and on purpose today and see if it doesn’t reduce envy’s grip on your heart.