Human beings do dumb things.
Coffee grounds in the maker sans a filter, “That was dumb.” Dating two girls at the same time who also happen to be roommates, “That was dumb.” Starting a load of laundry only to come back 45 minutes later to an empty machine, “That was dumb.” Showing up for am 8:00amTuesday class and no one other students are present…because it’s Wednesday, “That was dumb.”
It’s possible I know a little something about each of these and a few more too.
Our flawed humanity produces dumb expressions and behaviors. In the rankings of dumb things done by human beings, one stands out above many of the others. Comparing myself to another humanbeing is dumb, and we all do it.
- A woman compares her marriage to her girlfriends’ marriages.
- A guy compares his marriage to his buddies’.
- Old men compare themselves to young men wishing they had the opportunities the young bucks do.
- Young men compare themselves to old men wishing they had the achievements the old guys do.
- Curvy females compare their body shapes to skinny females while skinny females compare their bodies to shapely females.
- Dudes with beater rides compare their transportation to guys with hemi engines.
- Children compare their parents to the moms and dads of their friends, and parents compare their kids to the brats who came over for dinner last night.
Is there any end to the comparing we do?
The Holy Spirit warned us about this, “When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise” (2 Corinthians 10:12).
In other words comparing myself to someone else is dumb. Nothing valuable comes from it. Worse, damage comes from it.
Teddy Roosevelt, our 26th president, gave wise counsel about comparison. “Comparison is the thief of joy,” he offered. He was right. Think how often what should be an otherwise happy event becomes on occasion for tears, sadness, or even anger because the event turned in to a comparison pageant.
Comparing ourselves to other flawed human beings and their achievements or lack thereof, to their better than average lives or their subpar accomplishments is not wise. It’s a mind battle you must wage without relent and against all odds.
You wage the battle by looking to Jesus Christ. You remember his sinlessness has become yours. His identity as the son of God has become yours. His reality of eternal life with him and all those who love him has become yours. You compare the reality of what you were to what you are now, and you compare the reality of what will be to the reality of what now is. You rest peacefully in what Jesus has accomplished and promised.
Take heart my friends, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet been revealed. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him because we will see Him as He is (1 John 3:2).
As always I welcome your feedback and any suggestions you might have for an upcoming Lunchtime Musing.