Comparison is the thief of joy. -Theodore Roosevelt

Comparison has been haunting me lately.  I honestly didn't realize it until I was at our local swimming hole and realized I was embarrassed to take off my t-shirt and shorts because, well, my body birthed a nine pound baby six months ago.  I saw other moms in suits that had flat tummies and sculpted arms and waxed bikini lines.  All I could think about was how ashamed I was of the body I inhabit.  Instead of swimming with my kids, I was stuck on the sidelines thinking about how I need to throw away every ounce of chocolate in my house when I get home.

Comparison also caught up with me when I was visiting a dear friend.  She has a beautifully dressed home and everything seems to have the perfect place.  Her art is neatly hung and her knick knacks are Anthropologie-esque.  As much as I enjoyed this sweet friend's conversation, I left feeling slightly less-than.

Comparison fights for my attention almost daily on Instagram and Facebook and Pinterest.

My problem with comparison even showed up when I was having a conversation with my husband about how a certain friend seems to have it all together.  He confidently told me, "Babe, there will always be people that have more than us and people that have less than us.  We have to find what's right for our family."

Boy, I needed to hear those words.

This comparison battle is rooted deep in my brain and heart.  It started when I was an elementary kid begging my parents for a pair of Guess shorts and continued into high school when I wanted a new car and my hair a certain way (not brown and frizzy) and wishing the 'cool' kids at school would invite me to their parties on Saturday night.

Honestly, I thought I was over the comparison thing once I hit thirty.  I finally felt confident in the person God created me to be and was trying to live out His perfect plan for me.  So, you can imagine my surprise when I felt the unwelcome feelings of inferiority the past few months.  It's still there, sneaking up on me, trying to steal my joy.

I am genuinely happy for the moms with hot bods and the friend who loves decorating and the women on Instagram who are posting the most beautiful pictures of their babes and families.  They are living their life authentically and I am happy for them.  Aha moment, I'm not so happy with me.

I have started to pray about this comparison problem and have asked God to heal my brain and my heart from the lies it sometimes tells.  I want to be joyful and confident and free from the ridiculousness that is comparison.  And I know that I know that I know I will have to be intentional about refusing to listen to the voice in my head telling me I'm not enough.

Kevin doesn't mind my squishy, mommy midsection.  My babes don't care whether I have a curated living room.  And you better believe not one of my people care what my Instagram feed looks like on a daily basis.  Oh, and the God of the universe loves me in spite of all my failures and shortcomings and negative self talk.  They love me and I need to start loving me more, as I am.

Comparison is the thief of joy.  And I don't want to waste one more precious moment thinking about what I don't have and be joyful about what I do have.  I refuse to let the dirty lie of comparison steal the joy that God has placed in my life: my family, my friends, and my faith.

A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it.  It just blooms.

I need to just start blooming already.

1 comment:

  1. This is excellent Vanessa! So raw and so true of all of us! I am so glad you are choosing joy and not allowing comparison to steal it! You are so gifted and this blog alone is and will be a Blessing to many women!


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