When is the last time you have had a vulnerable moment? One of those moments in time where you allow someone else to see what’s been going on deep inside your thoughts and heart? These moments are so very precious, and very much needed when you get to have them with other believers. A few weeks ago my mom and I had sat in a hotel room at our denominations convention and we had one of these moments. As I made some hotel coffee, my mom began to share with me her struggles of comparison, and as she shared, it hit home with exactly what I had been struggling with.
You see, comparison has always been, and probably will always be a struggle. I would love to meet a girl who doesn’t struggle with this and learn her secret! As a little girl I remember comparing my clothes and belongings to others, and as I got older I compared my relationship status, like-ability and outward appearance.
Recently, Satan has been attacking me again with this awful sin of comparing. With my husband and I pursuing church planting in the district of Washington D.C. there have been some things I’ve realized I will need to give up, like not owning a home, not having a secure income, our child not knowing what it’s like to have a backyard to play in, living in an unsafe neighborhood, and living in a very small space.
It’s been easy to look at others who have these things and sulk in what I have to give up.
But, in my pity party, I was reminded of the joy of following Jesus. A couple weeks ago my dad preached a sermon from Philippians 2 and my “lense” or “view of life” was put back into check.
“Complete my joy by being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men, and being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
Jesus didn’t consider His own interests when He came to this earth and walked among us. He became human, was shown hate and scorn, and ultimately died on a cross for us.
Paul’s phrase of “Have this mind (ESV),” is also translated, “Make your own attitude (HCSB).” …Paul is telling me I need to have the same mind or attitude as Jesus…not considering my own interests, but the interest of others.
If I would put on the mind of Jesus, I would recognize that there are lost people headed toward hell in Washington D.C., and they need to hear the hope of the gospel!
So this is my prayer… that my heart would be so concerned and burdened for them that the struggles of church planting in the city will be nothing in light of the gospel being proclaimed to them.
In reality, my list of things to give up is measly compared to the work of Christ.
So today I am going to choose to overcome my battle with comparison by putting on the mind of Christ. I know that this struggle will probably arise again, and I pray that I will once again put on the mind of Christ and see people the way Jesus does.
3 thoughts on “That little thing called comparison…”
Amber, I have returned to this article several times since you posted it – it really hits home for me with what I’ve been struggling with lately. With both of us aiming toward freelance (inconsistent income, horray!) careers, it’s been hard for me to realize that owning a home, traveling, and getting the “quality of life” we’ve always wanted (heck, even a decent wardrobe) is going to be more challenging than most people. I’ve always felt that I was “less than” because of how I looked, dressed, and was compared to other people. Thank you so much for writing this – I’m so glad you have the conviction and compassion you both have to sacrifice yourselves for the sake of God’s word. Hope to catch up with you soon, but in the meantime, be blessed beyond imagining. 🙂
Kristin, thank you so much for your encouragement! Congratulations on your book! That is so exciting! Praying for you and your husband, and I pray God uses you and your creativity for His glory 🙂
Grreat reading your blog post