Joy Thief and Link up
Have you been here? Comparing yourself to others.
You think if only you had ______ then you too would be content, joyful, fulfilled.
Growing up we did not have a lot of material things. I remember wondering what it was like to have new clothes, not hand me downs. Often, I felt left out, because we couldn’t go to certain places, we didn’t have the money. As I grew it only seemed to become more intense of a feeling.
My family moved many times, renting homes and apartments. One of my deepest desires was to stay in one place, one home, one school, one community. Looking at children who knew each other from preschool, who had long-lasting friendships, whose families had always lived in the community seemed like an unattainable goal for me. I coveted the thought of this life.
Could I ever have that? Could I know the joy of staying in one place? What did it feel like to start the school year with friends in the classroom who would call out your name as you entered the class? My life was completely opposite of this dream.
In the midst of this comparison I was missing a gift, Joy! Let me explain. As I was comparing my life to what others had, I missed all of the things that were good about my life. Sure, they had stability and history, but I had adventure, new opportunities and excitement! If I didn’t like someone in my class, I probably wouldn’t see them the next year! I learned how to make friends quickly and was able to see many different types of schools! I was exposed to a variety of cultures and communities! All of these components have played a role in my development. Today as I look back, I am grateful that I had those experiences.
Because of my past, I am able to be more effective as a teacher. It has prepared me to reach out to many people, cultures and communities. I am not afraid to be in new situations, talk to people I do not know or try new things!
Comparison is a dangerous thing!
It robs us of the joy of the journey! It’s a JOY thief.
Comparison takes our eyes off what God is doing and puts our focus on envy.
When our focus turns from Jesus we will become discontented!
Choose Joy, Choose to live what Paul learned.
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. Philippians 4:12
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August 10 Link Up