Some of you know that I took a bit of a break last week. I needed some time off from this wonderful world of blogging to renew my perspective.
You see, before I took that break I started to notice something interesting happening with my attitude and my thoughts concerning my home. It all started innocently enough. Browsing for ideas and inspiration for our master bedroom redo led to me to all sorts of ideas for my entire home. Pretty soon I was redoing my entire home, at least mentally.
I noticed this major lack of contentment with how my home looked, even though it really looks just fine. So I pulled back and stopped looking for inspiration, realizing that I already had everything I need to make my room just right.
And in all this I got to thinking about how easy it is to compare ourselves to others. We look at the way others decorate their homes and think that we can do that too. Or we see how other parents are with their children and wonder why we can’t be so kind or patient. Maybe we notice another couple’s wonderful marriage and ask why ours is sometimes a wreck. That line of thinking rarely leads to a good outcome, and constantly comparing ourselves with others can lead to such disappointment and frustration with our lives. It’s that greener grass thing. And I think we all know that on the other side the grass still needs to mowed, fertilized, watered and sometimes have the doggy poo removed.
In comparing myself to others, at least on a decorators level, I miss the wonderful fact that God made me who I am and there is no one like me. Because there is no other family just like mine no one else will have my children’s wonderful art on the walls, or my children’s ideas on how their rooms should look. No one else has the same scuffed kitchen table as mine, the one with our daughter’s name scratched on the top.
And in all other areas of life comparing myself to others causes me to use others as mirror to reflect who I should be. I should have no other mirror but God, and when I scrutinize my life I should do so with the thought of reflecting God in all I do.
Honestly, my obsessive thoughts about my home were totally out of line. But how often do we get so caught up with what others are doing that we forget that we need to be true to ourselves and who God made us to be?
I want my focus to be on God alone, and how he made me. Not my neighbor, not my sister, not the blogger down the street. How about you?
(Does this sound familiar? It seems like God has a theme lately-I’m going to listen better this time. Check out this post for more on this idea.)