My five-year old daughter has a new habit of putting simple things on a scale. Recently she said to me “Daddy I am hungry! It’s like a 100 out of 100.” We laugh at how she is putting her hunger on a scale, but we often do this exact thing but with things like our goodness, generosity, or maybe our financial status. We get into the “compare game” and say to ourselves “well I am not as bad as (fill in the blank)”. This attitude is so subtle but it is incredibly dangerous! It is dangerous because it lulls us into believing that the flaws in our character are not something we should be working on because there is no motivation to change them. More importantly it causes us to withdraw from an attitude of dependence on God. A God who accepts us for who we really are despite our flaws. We in essence become a “pharisee” who looks down on the shortcoming of others while “white-washing” our own faults. Jesus in Gospels saved his sternest rebukes for people in this camp!
The challenge for all of us is to not compare! When we are tempted to go down that road we need to stop ourselves and realize that all of us fall short in some area of our lives. And we serve a God who has made up for all of our short-comings in the person of Jesus Christ who died on the cross. So let me ask you:
What area(s) of your life are you apt to compare yourself to others? How can you focus on helping others overcome their shortcoming instead of comparing yourself to them?