what we bring to the table (and what jealousy does to dreams)

You have probably heard people say, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” I completely agree. Recently I have been butting heads with the ugly voice of comparison, and it is starting to give me a headache.

I was talking to a friend who is a twin. She was sharing about how much better her twin sister is at multiple things. I asked her if comparison was an issue for her. Can you imagine having someone who looked exactly like you – who shared your DNA? People would always be comparing you to each other. Vocally.

Here’s my unsolicited (although you are choosing to read this…) opinion: What lust is for men, jealousy and comparison is for women. It is our deepest struggle, our most challenging foe. 

Essentially both jealousy and lust are wanting something you should not or cannot have. Obviously men struggle with jealousy and women with lust, but it seems in most of my conversations, that the dominating struggle in most women’s lives is comparison to others.

As I begin to dream and have big hopes for my life, I find myself constantly comparing myself to those who have either reached those dreams or are next to me in the “race” towards those hopes and dreams. And I struggle. I’ll be honest – I sometimes hope for their downfall. I compose mental lists of why I’m better than them, or, more often, why they are better than me.

So God has given me a mantra, to hopefully help me battle these thoughts and, instead, hope for success and great things for others as well as myself.

There is enough room at the table.

The “table” being whatever your dream or hope or goal may be. There is room. This gives us permission to dream for ourselves, but also to cheer on those around us.

This is especially true when we view “the table” as a group of people furthering the Kingdom of God. There is always room then. Because the goal should not be our own personal success and position, but to always be bringing people into the presence of Jesus, to know Him and become more like Him. If that isn’t our goal, then maybe we shouldn’t even be at the table. Know what I mean?

It goes the other way too, dreamer. There is room at the table for you as well. You may not believe that you have the ability to reach your dreams or be among those at the table – you do. There is room for you as well. God has GOOD planned for you, far beyond what you could come up with yourself. God has prepared a seat for you at the table, surrounded by people who also have dreams and passions to change the world and further the Kingdom.

We cannot limit others by our jealousy and comparison – God created us all uniquely to work together to expand the Kingdom (and the table). Instead of bringing our jealousy to the table, what if we all brought our own unique passions and talents and worked together to change the world?

We cannot limit ourselves with fear of being undeserving – Jesus came to redeem us and offer us a seat at the party. If you’ll listen, He is always inviting you: Come, I have prepared a place for you.

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I write to process, and sometimes send those thoughts out into the void. Passionate about Jesus and people and bringing those two together. Living in and loving Denver. Working with college students, who are the coolest. Seeking Jesus and JOY in everything.

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