Tuesday, August 12, 2014

My Midge personality

When I was a child I played with dolls.  At the mature age of seven, I wanted a Barbie for my birthday.  I got a Midge doll instead.  I was very disappointed that year.  My sister had a Barbie doll and I wanted one just like hers.  So I pretended my Midge was a Barbie.  Every time I played dolls, I measured my wild imagination against something that didn't exist.  

My Midge doll never measured up to my sister's Barbie doll.

I never told my mom how I really felt about my Midge doll.   I packed it away in my personal paraphernalia, neatly folded in my heart and became skilled in comparisons.  I didn't unpack that cluttered thought  until years later when it hit me that I would never measure up to be "Barbie" perfect.  

As a child, I was compared to my siblings in everything.  In school, I was lacking in any sport skill.  I was always the last to be picked for a team.  I was the first out in kickball.  The last to grab a swing on the playground, the slowest, the weakest, the least, and the heaviest.  I compared my worth to the abilities I saw in others.

I grew in wide stature, thinking everyone was my competition.  My efforts in everything centered around pleasing people with what I could do.  I could make people laugh, I could be a good friend who tolerated just about every kind of treatment, and I was loud.  

On the inside though, I just wanted you to like me.  Days upon days I used to wrestle with just seeking approval.   Gratefully, I have moved from that insecure place, those feelings of failure in the life department.  My past comparisons don't  hold a fearful grip on my thinking anymore.

How did I kick this bad habit of self-comparison thinking?  I signed up for God's Triple A Team.  I am approved, accepted and anointed because I am His.  You are too.

What teaches us to measure ourselves as unacceptable, unworthy and longing the discovery for our place in this world?   We pin our hearts on what the world says about us instead of believing what God says about us.  We look to Pinterest.com to find our best look instead of seeing God's reflection of His deep love for us as recorded in Psalm 139.  We train by imperfect sources.  God longs to perfect us, for His creation to know and live from His approval.  

Our worth is from Jesus who has already compensated for our imperfections.  Your worth was worth dying for.    This changes everything.  

Comparisons are deadly. Comparison breeds discontentment. 2 Corinthians 10:12 says, "We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise."  It's not a good practice to measure yourself to the standards of man. The danger of comparison is no matter who you compare yourself to, there is always someone whose prettier, skinnier, smarter, faster, more connected, reads faster, blogs better or is in a more prominent position than you.

Comparisons create pride. "We say that people are proud of being rich, or clever, or good-looking, but they are not. They are proud of being richer, or clever, or better-looking than others. If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking, there would be nothing to be proud about." ~ C.S. Lewis.  Comparing only makes me think I have to measure up to man's imperfect standards of success.   It leaves me wanting more of what man has accomplished.

Comparison leave us resentful.  We become resentful of God's blessings when we compare His goodness at work in our lives.  We ignore God's mercy with the idol of entitlement.  We receive God's grace and mercy by faith in the proven worth of Jesus.  Knowing that should drop all the competitions for the the blue ribbon comparisons that we seek.   "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. " Philippians 4:11-12.

Know who you are. Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." God loves you, and has chosen you to be His child before the foundations of the world were created. Accept that He loves you uniquely just like He has gifted you individually and with a specific purpose.  We are to use what He's planted inside of us to bring Him glory.  

Stuff or people will never fill a need that only God can fill.  God doesn't compare His children.  In fact, God hates comparisons.  We are created and gifted individually by God who loves us the same.  Knowing who are in Christ is also knowing who you don't have to be. 

The danger of comparison is that we find ourselves looking to other people for our value and determining our worth by how we compare with other people. It's fine for bargains, cars, apples and shoes but not for people. When we compare, we become the focus.  We pinpoint ourselves, we hang ourselves in the noose of man's judgement, above God's proven love for us.  Our long lists of who gets the "what"...the car we wanted, the job we needed, the spouse we desired, the most gifted children, the bigger ministry, the greener grass on the other side of the prettier fence, this dwelling in the land of shiny things  is meaningless.  Searching for our dreams at the mercy of man's measurements will never satisfy. 

Man's measurements can't compete with God's measure of us.  Live from God's approval and don't look for man to feel approved, accepted and loved.  Knowing the deep love my Heavenly Father brings all the acceptance I need.  I am His daughter accepted, approved, and anointed.

What sorts of comparisons seem to have the most negative impact on your life?

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