Where feelings of comparison truly come from.
In the world we live in today we have such easy access to see what is going on in someone elses life, whether it be through instagram, facebook or television. It has become easier more than ever to compare yourself to your peers.
Let us define the word:
com·par·i·son | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-sən , -ˈpa-rə- \
“The act or process of comparing; such as the representing of one thing or person as similar to or like another; an examination of two or more items to establish similarities and dissimilarities”
He has a better car than I do; She is much prettier than I am, wish I looked like that; She has more followers, people don’t like me as they like her; He is stronger than I am; He has more money and a bigger house than I do.
You might have not said these things but I am almost sure that somewhere in your timeline you thought it. When we see other people have it all when we don’t, we can’t help but wish we had better. So the comparison starts. The envy sinks in, the bitterness and sometimes even hatred sets in.
You might be a high school graduate reading this without a degree. You probably did not have the opportunity to go to a good college, so you compare yourself to your peers. You might be a woman struggling to fall pregnant, a Dad wishing you could give your children what other parents are able to provide for theirs, you might be a young girl behind this screen feeling like you’re not good enough or you might be someone who has lost your way down the path of comparison and now you left with the broken pieces.
This world we live in has become toxic, woman are expected to look like Barbie dolls. Some compare themselves to that image, but in reality we know the image that most people portray on social media is edited. The beauty standard for woman today is so unreachable for regular women behind the screen. Most woman on the screen have gone for plastic surgery, leaving the women who look up to them feeling worthless. Woman today are lead to believe they need to look like Kylie Jenner, Kim Kardashian or like Amber Rose to be beautiful and in truth that is not the case. Woman crafted by God are already perfection in His eyes.
But where do we place our riches is the question? What do we truly seek , what do we truly want, what do we need? Who’s approval matters most to us? Advice is found in the pages of the Bible and it reads as follows:
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Matthew 6:19-21
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all things will be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33
What Jesus asks of us in these passages is not something that comes easy to any of us, but the Christian life is not one that is necessarily easy but it is one that shines bright for God.
Comparison started way before technology, instagram, television or facebook. David saw another woman bathing on a roof and he wanted what did not belong to him(2 Samuel 11), Lot’s wife wanted to stay in Sodom(Genesis 19:26),Cain wanted what Abel had (Genesis 4:8) and Adam and Eve wanted what God had (Genesis 3:5-7).
But you see, comparison is our sin. When we compare ourselves to others, when we desire things they have, evil starts nesting in our hearts and the choices we make after this has led us to where we are today.
God created a law in the 10 commandments He gave to Moses, the very last commandment it reads as follows:
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” – Exodus 20:17
When God says we should not covet, he is not saying it is impossible for us to acquire those things. He wants to deal with our heart issue. In the New Testament the Apostle Paul wrote that covetousness is a powerful desire that cannot be rooted out simply by outward obedience (Romans 7:12-17), it is like Idolatry (Ephesians 5:5; Col.3:5) and this also reveals to us that there is a different god lurking beneath the surface and we do not even know it. Remember the first commandment God gave Moses,you shall have no other god before Him (Exodus 20:3-5)
You see how the enemy wants to keep you in a state where you constantly compare yourself? Because He knows the true damage that comes with it and that is damaging your relationship with God.
So dear reader, Jesus knows your heart and he knows your struggle and He knows you can overcome this hardship but you can’t do it alone. Take His hand because He will never let you go.