Yesterday I posted in my Byline blog, “The Risk of Comparing Ourselves to Others.” Although my words focused on writers, the unwise practice of comparison is universal, applying to all people in all professions or pursuits. Succinctly, when we compare ourselves to other people, we either elevate ourselves by degrading them or lessen ourselves by elevating them.
Neither pleases God. Even so, the temptation to compare is enticing.
Some days I feed my ego, looking down on those I deem to have less faith, bare little fruit, struggle more, possess less knowledge, pray or read their Bible less often, or aren’t as close with God. I become proud.
Other days I devalue myself, envying those who seem to have greater faith, produce more fruit, possess greater knowledge, struggle less, pray and read their Bible more, or enjoy greater intimacy with God. I become abased.
Pride and abasement are both sins. Neither honors our creator, who made each of us.
Instead, consider that the Bible provides a standard for us to pursue and Jesus gives an example to follow – and the Holy Spirit offers guidance as we do both.
In this world we’ll never achieve God’s standard, but we need to try – and to do so without comparing ourselves with others.