Yesterday, a friend and I met for a lunch date. As we got talking, he randomly told me about a mutual acquaintance who is doing so well in life. I did not realise it then, but the spirit of jealousy slowly started creeping in because of this random information this friend shared. You see, I know this acquaintance and I had started listing why I thought she didn’t deserve the kind of blessing she had. I immediately went into a God what about me mode.
The Holy Spirit immediately rebuked me by reminding me of the lyrics to a certain local song I have barely paid attention to. As I googled the lyrics, I was amazed at the accuracy of the lyrics because I have really not paid attention to the song. A bit of the song could be translated as “No matter how far you think your house is, someone’s house is farther than yours. No matter how bad you think your situation is, someone has it worse….. Keeping your eyes on others will stop you from praising God”
I then asked God, “If I am not to compare my case with others, how do I petition my case with you? If I am not to say, Dear God, look at sister so and so or brother so and so, how do I let you know I think I deserve better? I am sure there was laughter in heaven at this point because once again, the Holy Spirit simply asked, “What makes you think heaven does not know what you deserve? Does scripture not teach you how to petition your case? Does the bible not say, in all things by prayer and supplication make your case known to God? Where did scripture say that by comparison make your case known to God?”
The Holy Spirit then went ahead to teach me why comparing yourself to others regardless of how valid you think your point is, is stupidity in the sight of the Lord.
First off, as humans, we have not been blessed with the gift of seeing into the future but Jehovah knows. As Jesus said in John 13: 7 “You do not realise what I am doing but later, you will understand”. I strongly believe that our destination today is because of the fact that Jehovah knows. I have said this over and over again but the Holy Spirit is teaching me that, it is not about saying but by believing and accepting it as the truth. Jehovah knows and that settles every reason we think we may have to compare ourselves to others.
Secondly, comparing ourselves with others will only leave us bitter and many destinies have been cut off because of bitterness. Tera Carissa posted this on her facebook page, “When the enemy wants to stop you, he uses circumstances to attempt to deposit bitterness”. By comparing ourselves to others, we take our eyes off our own blessings and as the songwriter said, this will stop you from praising God. When we forget the God factor in a situation, we involuntarily give the praise to the enemy. By comparing our situation to another, we are simply saying, “God you allowed the enemy to get to me. You did not fight for me, that is why I find it necessary to compare myself to sister so and so”. We then state the enemy as the victor without paying attention to all the victories God has won for us.
Thirdly, by comparing ourselves to others, we take away from the lessons of the moment. You see, wherever you find yourself at any given time as a child of God is because there are lessons you should learn at that instance. However, if like the Israelites, we spend the period complaining and comparing, a journey which should take forty days will end up taking forty years.
Whenever you feel the need to compare yourselves to someone, take a moment and start counting your blessings and it will really surprise you how far the Lord has brought you. Look where you started this journey from and you will be surprised at how He has kept you. Yes, you may not be where you want to be, others are far ahead of you but you are exactly where He meant for you to be at this time. Yes, it hurts that those you think should not be ahead of you are but you are making progress and that is all that matters and maturity includes embracing the pain that comes with the progress.