When appropriate, comparing can be a good thing. But used in our relationships, well, it can be devastatingly damaging. Do you ever find yourself comparing who you are with someone else? Or have you ever compared what you have to what someone else has? Like your hair, your body, your clothing, your house, your talents, your journey, your children, your faith? We’ve all done it. Well, in this episode we’re taking a look at comparison, what God might have to say about it, what happens when we compare, and how damaging comparison can be.
She had everything going for her. She was more fit than me. She had the perfect life with the perfect home, the perfect job, the perfect set of skills. Her life was, yes, perfect. Or so it seemed. I found myself comparing what I didn’t have to what she had. And this made me feel as if she had everything and I had nothing.
But as I got to know her better, I began to realize her life wasn’t so perfect after all. Her marriage was struggling, she had trauma from her past that was paralyzing her, and her self-worth was in the pits. It wasn’t long before I started to feel like the superior one instead of the inferior one.
When we compare ourselves to others, no one wins.
Sadly, no one wins in the game of comparison. It is a self-destructive game we play with ourselves. Because have you noticed when we play this game of comparing ourselves with others, you and I are either the inferior or superior one? We either put ourselves down or we lift ourselves up. When we compare, we either condemn ourselves or we commend ourselves.
No one wins in this game. No one ends up as the hero or champion in the end. Instead, everyone loses out. Everyone, both the comparer and the comparee (is that even a word??), lose in this game. And the poor comparee! She doesn’t even know she’s in the game!
Seriously though, no one wins when we compare.
When we compare, our relationships suffer.
This act of comparing ourselves to others damages our relationships. It separates and divides us, it causes rivalries with scrutiny, by sizing up everyone and weighing against one another. On the other hand, refusing to compare is supportive and brings unity as we assist, aid, help, and support one another. We gather instead of divide.
So, why do we play this ridiculous game?
Why do we participate in this game of comparison?
I share in this episode that I don’t have the full answer, but how a certain psychologist termed this game and his take on it. I asked a few questions and added a couple Bible verses to point us in the right direction… to God.
Click on the player above to listen to the full 16-minute episode.
May we glorify God in refusing to compare ourselves in the days to come. May we embrace who He created us to be as we love Him, love others, and yes, even love ourselves. Thanks for being there today, friend. God bless you.
Links in this epidode:
- Synonyms of compare
- Social comparison theory (Psychology Today)
- 2 Corinthians 10:12 VOICE
- Matthew 10:29-31 VOICE
- Romans 12:6a MSG
- Encouragement for Real Life Community on Facebook
- Find additional encouraging Free Resources designed for you
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