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She was tall and really thin and didn’t have the curves that I had. She could pretty much wear anything she wanted.
She was very crafty and her home looked like a perfect conglomeration of pins from Pinterest done perfectly without the glue showing or the distressing looking so obviously not-distressed.
She often stayed under-budget and she could eat a hot-fudge sundae for lunch every day of the week and, gasp, never even gain an ounce.
She was everything that I’m not.
And though I tend to think of myself as a fairly confident person, I found myself listening to the small bit of truth that the enemy likes to do his best work upon.
She IS different from me. She’s craftier and thinner and her home doesn’t have clutter and she seems to always have quality time with her kids and her marriage is so great and suddenly, I’m assessing my own life and feeling a bit less-than before I walked through her door.
And the worst part is that she never did a thing to make me feel less than welcome. She was incredibly kind and gracious.
It was my own clouded lens I was looking through.
We later became closer friends and we talked about one of our first meetings.
“I was so intimidated by you, Natalie,” she said.
“Why on earth would I intimidate you?” I inquire.
She shared and then it was evident.
We women, we fall prey to this so easily.
We compare ourselves to others so much that oftentimes, we don’t even realize we are comparing ourselves to others at all.
And comparisons? They’re death-giving. Every single time.
Each of us was knit together and fearfully and wonderfully made so delicately by a God who had planned for our very existence since the beginning of time.
Every single one of us is a part of His story and your role in that story can only be fulfilled by you.
He creates us with different spiritual gifts and different bends. He makes us physically different and we possess different beliefs on politics. Some of us were born to be crafty with paper and fonts and home decorating and some of us share our art through the written word or a song that we sing.
But if I try to compare my gifting with someone else’s and feel inferior when I do, then I’m putting down the craftsmanship of the most talented Creator there has ever been.
Not to mention that oftentimes what we are comparing ourselves to can be, for lack of a better way to put this, a lie.
I’ve read recently that Facebook status’ can actually be the breeding ground for death-giving comparisons and the more I thought I about it, the more I realized the truth behind the statement.
Women talking about their amazing husbands and perfect marriages. Their children on the uber-high honor roll. The feature of their home in “House Beautiful.”
My friend, Amy Dane from “Amy in Wanderland” wrote a fabulous post about Facebook envy. You must read it.
And Lisa-Jo Baker writes on comparisons in the aptly-named post “Comparing Will Kick Your Teeth and Hijack Your Dreams Everytime” – another must read.
So just for today, sisters, can we vow to be content with who we are right at this moment? Can we lift up and encourage someone who normally might lead us down “Comparison Cove”?
And if we could vow to do that past just today, even better. Because comparisons don’t just make us feel less-than and therefore stink up our thoughts.
They create an atmosphere of death rather than life. Let’s not forget that as women, we are life-givers.
It’s time to honor the craftsmanship, sisters. Let’s celebrate those differences and encourage one another to shine our unique lights a way that only YOU can.
What about you – have you struggled with comparisons, too?