Have you ever met those people that seem to have it all together? Not the ones that pretend to have the perfect life to cover up their insecurities, I mean the genuine people. The ones that are kind to others, confident in who they are, and successful in pursuing their passions.
Oftentimes we kind of write them off, don’t we? Somehow the fact that they have “it all together” makes them some sort of mystical creature in a class of their own. If we are all born with the same instincts, the same basic needs, and into the same world – what is it that separates us from them?
Inhibition. Sometimes people misconstrue this for laziness – myself included. It isn’t that you’re lazy – it’s that you don’t believe in yourself. I used to call myself lazy all the time. I would make these epic goals and never follow through. I’m a huge list-maker, so I would plan everything out to perfection – this was fail proof! Weeks, or often just days, later I was already failing to follow the path I had laid out so carefully. I used excuses to justify to myself why I didn’t follow-through.
It wasn’t until someone pointed it out to me that I realized: I’m actually not a lazy person at all – I was just full of self-doubt. I had (and still have) an all-or-nothing type personality. If you don’t win, you lose. If you aren’t perfect, you’re a failure. Although having high expectations for yourself can be a positive thing, expecting yourself to be perfect at everything is just setting you up for failure and disappointment – the very thing you fear the most. This type of self-sabotage is not healthy and is completely counterproductive.
Inevitably, self-doubt and insecurities come with a partner-in-crime: comparison. Comparison is a very dangerous habit to adopt. It is one of the easiest ways for the enemy to rob you of your joy and distract you from God’s purpose for your life. Comparing yourself and your gifts to someone else’s is like judging a fish on it’s ability to climb a tree. The fish will focus all of it’s thoughts and energy on believing that it’s useless due to it’s inability to do something that it was never created to do.
“Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable…”
1 Corinthians 12:15-22
It’s not that you are lazy, and it’s not that you aren’t talented. You are refusing to put in the work. You’re letting the fact that you may not be the best at something keep you from everything. No, life is not easy. Yes, you will make decisions you regret – sometimes instantly and sometimes years down the road. Yes, there will be people that are prettier and more successful than you. Don’t let comparison distract you from your potential.
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
-Martin Luther King Jr.
The Bible says that the enemy is always on the prowl to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). Comparison is like venom pulsing through your veins. It starts with a thought. That thought slowly turns into a pattern, which turns into a habit. It steals your joy, kills your confidence and destroys opportunities.
Gratitude is the antidote for defeating comparison.
Diamonds are created by applying extremely high pressure. Without that pressure, they are simply chunks of carbon. In our lives, this process proves true as well. Pressure produces maturity and wisdom. The day you can recognize pressure as a blessing is the day you can start walking instead of crawling, running instead of walking, and flying instead of running. When you find your worth in Christ and not in how you compare to others, you are unstoppable.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
So crawl until you can walk, walk until you can run, and run until you can fly. Allow the pressure of life turn you into a diamond.
By Emily Meadows