Comparison Kills Contentment

| 02 July 2020

When I was a newly dubbed “adult,” I developed a misguided idea that I was supposed to be good at everything. But in my quest to do everything—and to do it all perfectly—I lost any semblance of balance in my life. While I had become very efficient with my time, my body started screaming that it needed rest and, of course, more than the four hours of sleep I was allowing myself.

It wasn’t until I fully grasped the grace and beauty of Ephesians 2:8-10 that I realized getting caught up in the comparison game of being “better” and “perfect” was a no-win situation. Instead, I needed to be content with the strengths — and weaknesses — in how God created me.

Ephesians 2:8-10 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

We can’t do anything to earn our salvation. God’s grace is a free gift. Yet, he still chose to create each one of us as his handiwork — his “masterpiece” as the New Living Translation says — uniquely imbued with strengths and, yes, weaknesses aligned to help us live out the good purpose for which we were created.

What I discovered was when I was focused on what others were doing and how I measured up, it robbed me of my peace. Instead, if I shifted my eyes from comparing myself to others onto the One who created me and the purpose he had for me, then Christ blessed me with the previously illusive contentment.

When we “keep our eyes always on the Lord,” as Psalm 16:8 says, then the Holy Spirit will lead us to the good purpose for which we were created, including the little things we do each day to encourage those around us. Shifting our eyes from comparison with others to focusing on Christ results in contentment and a balanced life, knowing that the Holy Spirit empowers us to do the “good works” He has prepared in advance.

By Cyndie de Neve
Senior Creative Director