Have you ever had something stolen from you? The other month my wife Kayla and I bought our first car together, a 2011 Ford Fusion. It was nothing too special, but after a year of saving and researching, we finally had the joy of being car owners. Well that didn’t last long as a week later our catalytic converter was stolen and the joy we had was quickly replaced with anxiety, stress, and a lot of long phone calls with insurance.
Our car is fine now, but I do think that we all have something that steals from us everyday. This is something that can be hidden well and can infect the best parts of our lives, often without a single word being said. What I am referring to is Comparison. I find that comparison is the number one thing that steals the joy out of my life. It’s like an annoying voice that says “I wish I could be like that”, “I wish I could do that”, “I wish I could have that.” And I am left feeling anxious, wanting more, and not being able to delight in what I already have. I want to note that this doesn’t just apply to our ‘stuff’ but to all areas of our lives.
So I had to ask, “How do I keep the comparison monster at bay?”
After studying John 10:1-21, I believe the answer is made clear to us and that is, choosing what voice we are going to listen to. In this passage, Jesus gives a parable about a good shepherd and some sheep that recognize the shepherd’s voice. The fact that the shepherd is referred to as ‘good’ helps us know that this shepherd knows his sheep well. He probably knows what they eat, where they sleep, how they interact with the other sheep. Making the shepherd someone who can speak to and care well for the sheep.
But, there are also others who come in and try to get the sheep away from the shepherd so that they harm them. They know they are powerless when the shepherd is there so they do everything they can to get the sheep away from the shepherd. In John 10:10 it says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
Comparison is something used to steal the joy we have in Christ which leads to an extraordinary and full life.
As followers of Jesus we need to grow in our ability to recognize the shepherd’s voice over the voice of comparison. To do this, we need to open our Bibles and see what God has to say about us and listen for these things when comparison comes knocking.
Here’s a list I made for both me and you:
- You are loved (Romans 5:8)
- You are redeemed (Ephesians 1:7)
- You are chosen (1 Thessalonians 1:4)
- You are made on purpose for a purpose (Ephesians 2:10)
- You are a friend (John 15:15)
- You are secure (Colossians 3:3)
- You are forgiven (John 3:16)
- You are delighted in (Psalm 18:19)
- You are cared for (Romans 8:38-39)
Listening to His voice ultimately leads to a joy that is far greater than anything else the world could offer and it is trustworthy.
If you want to live an extraordinary life, lean in and listen to the God who created you to be extraordinary.
Combat comparison by remembering who you are in Christ. Download these free printables to keep as a daily reminder.
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