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Comparing Apples to Eternity

Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’

Matthew 25:45

Watch Session Two: Why We're Broken

Right now, if you think of your closest friends, who is the smartest? Prettiest? Trendiest? Loudest? Richest? Strongest? Do you find it funny that we know the answer to these questions? Deep down inside of us in our human condition is the need to compare. We love sizing up a room to know where we stand. When it comes to issues of morality, we are no different. Since the beginning of time we have been saying things like, “Well at least I’m not as promiscuous as her.” “Well at least my gossiping isn’t as bad as her alcohol habit.” “At least when I sin no one gets hurt.” Or maybe your inner critic says, “I’ll never have it as together as her. My sins are more disgusting than hers,” or, “I wish my sin was anything other than this.” The problem with comparing our righteousness to others comes when we realize we are using the wrong measuring stick.

how we really measure

What if instead of comparing yourself to others, you tried to compare yourself to God? When we take our eyes off other broken people and place them onto the triune, we see how silly our comparisons were before. Imagine arguing with someone that you might have a millimeter of height on them and then realizing God’s height is higher than the heavens. Imagine trying to compare apples to oranges only to realize you were meant to compare apples to infinity. Do we even have words to quantify and qualify those comparisons? Our sin separates us completely from God, even if we think we have a leg up (or down) on our friends.

stop the lies; look to god

We can list so many reasons why comparison wrecks us. For starters, it robs us of joy, it causes us to commodify humans, it tempts us to think more highly of ourselves than we ought, and it makes us competitors when we are meant to be companions. But, more dangerously, the problem with comparison comes from demanding that we keep our eyes fixed on others and ourselves. Yet Scripture tells us no one is righteous (Romans 3:10). The longer we keep our eyes at earth level, the more destruction we tend to create. Instead, look to the heavens and ask yourself, “How do I measure up to his standard?” The gospel does not say that God comes to save us comparatively, in how we are doing compared to those around us. Instead, the gospel says every person needs total and perfect salvation to overcome our lack of righteousness.


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Daily Question

In what areas of your life do you tend to compare yourself to others? How might God be trying to get you to fix your eyes on him instead?

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Comments (10)

I have never compared myself to others thinking I’m better, however, I do put myself down quite a bit. Which I am trying to change. I keep trying, with the help of the Holy Spirit of God.
I love the idea of looking to God to cover me with assurance. I want to do that more. To accept God’s love with the confidence that is from God.

I get trembles when I feel myself in God’s presence as I pray. Then I know that I have the best thing I could have. Thank You Lord, for Your Love.

Comparing myself to others is something I struggle with daily. I am always wondering if someone is looking at me, judging me because my hair is out of place or maybe I have something in my teeth and someone is not telling me, but telling others. I have to try and remind myself that I am perfect in God’s eyes. He created me to be ME not like anyone else. I have a hard to telling myself that, but the more I do, the more I believe it. I have felt like God may be trying to fix my eyes on him instead since the beginning of this study– It has been the fresh start that I needed. I look forward to the daily readings every day so that I can connect with Gods word and get to know more about him and how he sees the world and everyone/everything in it.

I compare myself to other women’s beauty, their outgoing personalities, their confidence, self-esteem, the success of their children, their grandkids since I don’t have any, and also the flip coin of things that I would never do or be like, their worst character defects.

God might be trying to fix my eyes on Him by breaking my heart for what breaks His. God is calling me out of the idolatry of self and judging others. God is humbling me to care more about others feelings than my own.

In my younger days comparing and competing was important but now I see others in a different way. As God help me achieve goals he has helped me to be happy with other’s accomplishments and pray for their success.

I’m "the worst"! I tend to compare myself to people who are more spiritual, can pray out loud better, can speak extemporaneously about scripture better, is more compassionate to others than I am. It’s never ending…..While it
IS true others are better at those things, it means nothing about my place in the Kingdom of God. I’m worthy to be in God’s Kingdom because, and only because, of Jesus. I also find myself not being as understanding as I should be about other’s spiritual life and desire to learn more about Jesus and to know him more; or to not struggle with sins that I don’t struggle with. But again….if we truly have put our faith and trust in Jesus and his finished work on the cross and his resurrection, then we are all in the Kingdom of God.

There are times when we see something that others can be and/or do that we might feel better than what we do. I think that we all need to realize that God has enabled us to be there for him. I believe that God has placed all of us here, so that through our lives and/or example, we may lead others to him. We are all capable of doing different things for him, which someone may see in someone, and not in others.

I compare myself to others in the area of vacation trips mostly. I long to travel but am not in an income bracket that allows me to do much of it. So when I’m on Face Book and see pictures of my friends in far off places doing amazing things I want adventure too (thus jealousy sips right in there and I lose my joy; I need to get off FB).
I’m not sure how God might be trying to get me to focus on Him. I know I have everything I need to have a joyful adventures life. There is plenty of adventure to be had right where I live. Maybe I need to get to a point of being satisfied.

I found some really great quotes “The problem with comparing our righteousness to others comes when we realize we are using the wrong measuring stick.” And “it makes us competitors when we are meant to be companions.” I know Christ calls us to Love one another, in a world that is so … well you can fill it in right? We need to continue to love one another and pray.

I compare myself to the extent that I see what others (Christians) have in their marriages and what I don’t. Then I realize that I was not patient enough for God and misunderstood what I thought that He was saying. So now, I must stretch further to overcome my wrong choices and lack of patience. I must work harder to be a better wife. God helps me get through each day experiencing my own joy which I previously lost because of my poor choices.

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