We do not dare to compare ourselves with those who think they are very important. They use themselves to measure themselves, and they judge themselves by what they themselves are. This shows that they know nothing. But we will not brag about things outside the work that was given us to do. We will limit our bragging to the work that God gave us, and this includes our work with you. (1 Corinthians 10:12-13)
When have you compared yourself to others?
On what standards are you most likely to compare yourself to others—or others to each other—in your current roles and places, such as family, work, church, and so on?
How have comparisons robbed you or others of joy?
Most games are determined by the score. When the time runs out, the score determines who wins and who loses. Even if a team has had some phenomenal moments and plays, the credit of the game is dependent on the score at the time of the buzzer. You’ve probably heard people talk about how the score of a game didn’t reflect the “real” winner, indicating the losing team played a lot better than the end score reflected. Some games are so close that if the time was just a few seconds longer or shorter, the winner might have been different. We use scores to measure results. We use scores to compare ourselves and others. And it’s not just about sports and games. We use test scores, weight, clothing sizes, sales numbers, bank accounts, square footage of homes, and much more. If we can measure and compare it, we use it.
How does God measure us? He definitely doesn’t quantify our accomplishments the way we do. He doesn’t compare us to each other. He compares us to who He knows we can be. He created us in His image, and He compares us to Himself…not in an unrealistic or perfectionist way but in the reality of who God created us to be. When we use our own standards of comparison, we miss out on glimpsing the reality of where we are and where God wants us to be. We become results-oriented, when God is process-oriented. Oh, He absolutely is invested in the results as well. He wants us to live with Him for all eternity, but eternity isn’t just in the future. God’s eternity stretches into the future beyond anything we can imagine and also goes into the past beyond anything we can imagine. We are living in eternity right now. How we respond to God’s pursuit matters. Maybe it’s about the score after all—just not the way we expect. God keeps the score. We’re not sure of all the details, but when we choose Him, moment by moment, we really don’t need to know anything else.
Roll a die several times, comparing each result. Are they the same, different, less, more? Carry the die with you throughout the day, and each time you see it, commit to letting God determine your value instead of chance, numerical value, or something else.
Today’s post is part of a 30-day devotional of Adventures in Faith. A new post will be available each morning to launch your day with reflection questions, God’s Word, and a personal challenge.