“He’s only 5 years older than me. He’s young. Like really young… and he’s done ALL that! I can’t compete.”
A conversation with my husband as we drove to the park today really hit me like a ton of bricks. He was sharing about a young man who was taking over a senior pastor position for a hugely successful and well known pastor. To be his replacement is just an enormous honor. This young man who will soon be filling some very big shoes is close in age to my husband. I immediately protested of course.
“You’re amazing! You are so good at what you do! You’re an incredible husband, father, pastor, friend, mentor, and more! Not to mention you’re doing all that while getting two masters degrees in the time it takes to get one. You are just who you need to be.”
Funny thing happened. When I was exclaiming so proudly to John that he should never feel like he doesn’t measure up I began to feel that little prick of conviction. I changed my tone pretty quick.
“I understand. I know how you feel. I feel that way too sometimes. I see women my age who are super successful. They’ve written and published three books already. Their blogs are so inspiration and they have thousands of readers. They speak at conferences and are sought after by others for advice and encouragement. OR they are my age and they have four children and are just so ahead of me in life. I feel like I don’t measure up sometimes too.”
The thing about these thoughts is that they are lies! I measure up to exactly what God wants for me. I am not required or expected to do any more than what He wants me to do. I think most of us tend to feel a little insecure at times. Especially when we measure ourselves against others we deem more successful at life. But you know what the amazing thing is? Those women who seem to have it so figured out… the ones I’m so intimidated by… they are a little insecure too. Yup! They worry about being good enough just like me.
But all that this comparing does is cause striving that wasn’t meant to be. Striving to do what someone else is doing. Striving to reach people someone else is already reaching. Striving to be someone I wasn’t created to be. And that’s when it hit me. I am enough. God made me… fearfully and wonderfully he made me.
I was created to fill a need in this earth that no one else can fill.
And so were you. That’s right. God made me to do things that he didn’t make anyone else to do. That’s where calling lies. That’s where passion is found, and that’s the measure of success. Finding out who you are in Jesus and what he created you to do. Then do it. Nothing less and certainly nothing more.
We will all have days when we wake up feeling just a bit unsure of who we are. But if we can just keep at the fore front of our minds whose we are our perspective might change. If we can get past our feelings and focus on the truth then maybe we’ll find ourselves a little more certain of our place in this world. And keeping in mind that our place in the next world determines our impact on this world.
So I’m declaring that I quit. I would like to humbly bow out of the comparison game. I just don’t need the waste of my time and energy. I’ve decided to focus those thoughts on more productive things – like the truth. The truth that I am a daughter of the King. The truth that I was made beautiful in His sight… every single piece of me (even the bits I don’t always like). The truth that my life matters. The truth that I am me – the only one ever created – and that’s all I need to be … it’s all God wants me to be.