A 2017 Gallup poll of over 2.5 million Americans showed the largest decline of overall feelings of well-being (or joy) in the last 10 years. We’re lonely, disconnected, and discontent with our lives. We don’t think we can pin all of our troubles on comparison. It is a more complicated equation than that. But, we do think that the longing of all of humanity is to be more like this, and less like that–to have more of this and less of that–our tendency to make tally marks and tier levels out of virtually everything contributes greatly to our overall joylessness.
We call it a comparison “trap” for a reason. When we compare ourselves to anyone but Christ, we never come out unscathed. Comparison is a two-edged sword. If we see ourselves as a failure, we’re going to be driven by guilt and shame. That’s certainly not of God. And on the flipside, if we see ourselves as a success, we’re going to be puffed up with pride. And that’s not of God either. Our only hope is to fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author, Finisher, and Perfecter of our faith.
Galatians 6:4-5: But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each will have to bear his own load.
Today, we’re going to talk about comparison and the “trap” that it really is.