“Why can’t I be more like her?”
“There is no way I can do what she does!”
“I will never be as loving and kind as my friend” I whined in my heart feeling yucky in comparison.
The problem is…comparison. And probably more than a little jealousy of the gifts I see in others.
Then I remember…
All good things come from God!
His love flows through each heart. His gifts shine in each soul. We don’t create our gifts. Our talents and abilities don’t originate with us. Yes, we nurture and practice them. We choose to grow them or hide them but we did not create the seed. All of our gifts come from God. We are the caretakers. He is Master. We are managers.
What can we take credit for? Nothing.
What do we answer for? How well we invested what He gave us.
Did we hide our gifts or use them? Multiply them or let them grow stagnant?
Any boasting belongs to Him. All glory goes to Him.
See Him in the gifts of others not competition. See His hand. See His glory. Jealousy is about questioning God. Questioning how He chooses to show His glory. We are all on the same team, running the same direction.
Winning is helping others.
Winning is God being glorified.
Self-exaltation is a loss, a defeat. Leaving others behind, shutting them out, resenting their gifts, not loving others or putting self first is putting ourselves in opposition to God.
“…All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, ‘God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.’” 1 Peter 5:5b (NIV)
All gifts are given for one purpose—to serve others.
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” 1 Peter 4:10 (NIV)
So that, “…In all things God be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11b (NIV)
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3
“Then he said to them all: ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.” Luke 9:23-24
We need to lose…so we can win.
Do you struggle with comparison as I do? Please share your thoughts.
Remember it is all Jesus. It is all grace.
Originally published for Takin It to the Streets – A ministry to the poor and homeless serving the Omaha, Nebraska area