We know what comparison looks like. We know what the truth is. So what are some practical ways we can combat the comparison trap? I think the antidote for comparison is gratitude. Gratitude for truth we can root ourselves in, gratitude for what we have, and gratitude for the ways God has blessed the people around us.
When we choose to express gratitude we will find contentment, and 1 Timothy 6:6 says godliness with contentment is great gain. James 1:17 tells us “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” We need to train our hearts and minds to a first response of contentment and gratitude for the good gifts that we have received from a good God.
We can apply that to our own lives and also to the people around us in the form of encouragement. Romans 12:10 says, "Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves." It’s hard to be negative when you’re actively encouraging someone else. When we see someone else enjoying a success or a blessing that we aren’t, let’s rejoice for them! Let’s celebrate their successes! Let’s tell them how happy we are for them, tell them they're doing a good job, tell them we're rooting for them!
That is NOT always our automatic response, and it certainly isn’t the way our society tells us to respond. But how amazing would it be if we all committed to living that way this year? Can you imagine the impact it would have both in our own hearts and those of the very people that we compare ourselves to, if we are intentional about honoring and encouraging them rather than allowing comparison to take over?
Take some time today to reflect on some of the gifts that God has given you, and to thank him. If you are a journaler, write them down. Then, take time to thank him for blessing the people around you as well. Maybe send an encouraging text to someone who you find yourself comparing yourself to, let them know you're cheering them on and are thankful for their presence in your life.