This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3:22-24
Bad reality television shows are one of my guilty pleasures. Even though I know a good portion of the "reality" I'm watching is scripted, I still tune in. It's the train wreck principle at play - you know it's a mess, but you can't help but watch. As the drama unfolds, the chaos in my own life suddenly doesn't look so bad. For all the craziness that exists in my world, it hasn't reached Real Housewives of Atlanta level. In terms of my brokenness, I feel better about myself knowing that I'm not keeping up with the Kardashians.
As the credits roll with my pride and ego soaring, I usually hop onto Instagram or Facebook. Big mistake. The measuring stick of social media has a way of chopping me at my knees and dropping me down a few pegs. Seeing all the picture-perfect posts that fill my newsfeed make my imperfections more pronounced. Compared to everyone's highlight reel, my behind-the-scenes struggles aren't so beautiful.
Comparison is a killer. It destroys any hope of intimacy and closeness with each other as well as our Creator. We can't connect with people we're competing against. It's us verses them. There are the haves and have nots. We live in a broken world that pits us against one another and encourages us to reflect on where we rank.
Our tendency to compare our lives to others even creeps into our spiritual life. We do it sometimes without even thinking. We judge how "good" we are by scanning the room so to speak. Our perceived goodness resides on a scale that fluctuates depending on who we're up against.
We feel better about our shortcomings when others around us falter. We might have a mess, but we're not as bad as them. But, the opposite is true. Shame creeps in when we go toe-to-toe with those spiritual giants who "seem" to have it altogether. Any goodness on our part pales in comparison.
Christ came to put an end to the comparison game. The cross crushed competition by reminding us that we're all the same. Without Jesus, we were ALL hopeless. We ALL missed the mark. We ALL looked to lesser things hoping to find fulfillment and purpose. We ALL went our own way. We ALL sinned and fell short of God's glory. No one's goodness was good enough.
But, Christ didn't leave us to wallow in our brokenness. He created a way for ALL of our wrongs to be made right. By conquering death, Jesus offers us ALL access to a full life. ALL that matters is whether you believe that His grace leads to our redemption. It doesn't matter who you are. In God's Kingdom, we're ALL equal and we ALL matter.
· Where are you playing the comparison game? How is engaging in this game influencing your connections with God and others?
God, rather than looking to others, may I compare my life to Your character, Your ways, and Your heart. Thank you for mending my broken heart and providing a way for it to be whole once again. I will stand in the security Your forgiveness and grace provides. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.