God sets the standard for behavior in this world. That standard is one of unconditional love, compassion, acceptance and kindness, both for ourselves and for everyone on the planet. Unfortunately, or perhaps, fortunately, His standard is so impossibly high that we can’t meet it without His help.
As a mere human, I am inherently flawed and am prone to being self-serving. My first reaction in almost any given situation is not “What can I do to help?” but instead, “How will this affect me?” Also, I tend to compare myself with celebrities and other luminaries – “Her hair is thicker than mine; she has perfect skin and the perfect weight and shape; he lives in a gorgeous house and has a great job; she drives the very car I want; her jewelry is to die for and worth millions; and her clothes! All those designers!; She’s so talented; I wish I had her artistic skill.”
In pondering this dilemma I’ve realized that by comparing myself to someone else I am basically telling God He screwed up. I’m saying to God that He made a mistake in creating me and that by making that mistake He doesn’t love me. So, my thought is this, am I really so presumptuous as to stand there, before the God of all Creation, of Miracles, of Unconditional Love and Never-ending Mercy, that I know better than He does about how I should be? Am I really that arrogant?
Maybe not in my conscious brain, but, each time I say ‘I hate my hair’ or whatever else there is about me I hate and because of what someone else has or does or is I covet what they have or do or are; deep in the hidden depths of my heart I am throwing God’s love and tender care for me back in His Beautiful Face. And each time I do that, another seed of doubt is planted and the desperate need for my ego (flesh) to separate itself from my spirit and drive a wedge between me and the God of my heart continues to grow.
And when that happens, as it most certainly will, I wander off away from God, doubting His love for me, and stumble along until I trip over my own feet and end up face down in the muck and the mire. And where is God? Right there with me waiting for me to reach out to Him so He, in turn, will reach for me, pick me up, clean the crap off me and set me on my way again.
Lord, help me to not compare myself to others, to not covet what they have or do or are. Remind me that I was made in Your Image and that with Your Grace and Love I am perfect in Your all-seeing eyes.
“We don’t compare ourself to others; they are just as fouled up as we are. The goal is to be like Him; anything less is inadequate.” (Max Lucado)