Monday, July 15, 2013

The Comparison Game

You know how the game works. No one officially read you the “rules” or told you how to play. It is almost instinctive. You watch, you wait, you critique, you compare…your children, yourself, your husband, etc. The sin of comparison is one of the sneakiest problems that we face as women and as moms.

We are constantly comparing our bodies, our homes, our children, our recipes, etc. There is this desire in our hearts that masquerades itself as perfection, but really is a part of us that seeks glory and honor for ourselves. We want people to notice us. We want our children to stand out as “the best”.

We were made to sharpen or encourage one another. God’s word makes it clear that we are to use our gifts to edify each other; not make someone else feel inferior. We also should not shake our fist at God, wondering why he gave us the life we have, while someone else seems to have something different or better.

Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and a place for competition: sports, spelling bees, brain brawls, karate, gymnastics, board games, etc. However, when we take this competitive attitude and forge it into our everyday relationships, we are bound for trouble. We either may other people feel inadequate or we make ourselves feel inadequate.

Lysa Terkeurst references this feeling in her “Unglued Devotional”. She explains her own feelings of inadequacy as she compared herself with another mom:

            “I gathered the restaurant bags, sighed, and crammed them into the overstuffed trash can. A friend had sent me a recipe that day that involved peeling and chopping and simmering. I imagined her trash can full of fresh veggie peelings and other things that proved her kitchen produced way more homemade goodness than mine.”
            “A little thread of guilt wrapped around my heart”
            “Sometimes I feel guiltier for what I’m not than thankful for what I am.”

Mom, have you ever felt that way? Lysa goes on to explain that she was asked by her daughter to speak at a bible study that night. Many showed up, and many were saved right there in the yogurt shop. She states, all of this occurred from “a woman whose trash can was filled with take-out bags and who isn’t the greatest cook, but a woman who wants to learn to be more thankful for what I am than guilty for what I am not.”

So, do you homeschool or do your kids go to school? Public or private? Do you cook or do you order out? Organic or not? Do you read music? Do you play sports? Is your Kindergartener reading yet? When did your child start talking? When did your child start walking? Do your kids play sports? Do you have a scheduled “quiet time” at your house? Is your house clean? Do your kids have a schedule of chores? Where do you buy your clothes? Do you do a load of laundry every day? 

Feeling the pressure yet? We are called to help, encourage, sharpen, and support each other. Ladies, we have so many things we can share with and learn from each other. The competition game has got to stop. Let’s delight in our strengths, let’s help each other in our weakness. Let’s stop bragging, comparing, back-biting, being jealous, etc. Let’s reap the benefits of a family of Christ, and may our children follow our example and do the same.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you so much for making us so wonderfully unique and complex. You made us in your image, and our diversity reflects that. May we delight in the different gifts you have given each of us and our children. May we use our gifts and talents to glorify you and not ourselves. May we not pridefully puff ourselves up or sadly beat ourselves down. Thank you that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Challenge: Call, text, email, or Facebook another mom friend today. Let them know how much you appreciate the way God has made them. As much as possible, be specific.

Challenge 2: What are some of the gifts God has given you? How can you use these gifts for his glory?

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”  Psalm 139:13-14

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:1


  1. Beautiful Teresa and oh so true!

  2. Whoa! That list did stress me out <3 Thanks for the great post and reminder!! I love that I can learn from those around me who are competent in areas I may find myself incompetent in. Great reminder to be thankful for who we are and for who God has placed in our lives <3

  3. Thanks for the encouragement and feedback girls! Can't wait to see you all soon! :)