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Turns out there’s a label for the funk I’ve been in lately.
That feeling of never being good enough. Never doing enough. Failing to be better at so many, many things.
As a women’s ministry leader I constantly analyze and compare myself and our women’s ministry events to those at other churches, to ones on Pinterest, and to that ideal made up in my head.
As a blogger I’m forever comparing my site to those I perceive as better.
As a mom, as a wife, as a friend…some days I feel like a big fat failure.
Can you relate?
I recently had the opportunity to pick up a copy of I’m Happy for You (Sort Of…Not Really): Finding Contentment in a Culture of Comparison by Kay Willis Wyma.
Truth be told, I almost said no.
I was running errands one day last month and happened upon the Family Life Today interview with Wyma about the Dangers of Comparison. It was then that my interest was piqued. What she was sharing at that moment made perfect sense to me. Here’s a link to the radio interview if you’d like to listen.
Wyma explains an alternate definition for OCD (Obsessive Comparison Disorder) it can “describe our compulsion to constantly compare ourselves with others, producing unwanted thoughts and feelings that drive us into depression, consumption, anxiety, and all-around discontent.”
Whether it’s due to Facebook, Instagram, magazines, blogs, or just that glimpse you’ve caught of what seems to be the perfect life, “comparison is relentless”.
The subtitle of the book is “Finding Contentment in a Culture of Comparison”. That is the achievable goal that Wyma presents to us.
I don’t know about you, but I really do want to be content. I’m tired of feeling less than.
One of the things I love most about this book is that Wyma shares many examples from her own life and her own thought processes that we can all relate to. Ever been to another friend’s house and spent the time comparing your home to theirs rather than enjoying your visit? Wyma candidly shares how she caught herself doing just that.
“Being preoccupied with how we measure up personally leads to either pride or humiliation, whereas choosing to focus on and congratulate the other person lifts us both up.”
To lift each other up. That is want I want for you and me. For us personally and for our ministries.
When we can learn to walk through life content with our reality we will exhibit and exude a peace that will draw others to Christ.
Wyma says, “Satisfying life is found in relationships and friendships where we can genuinely rejoice along with someone who is happy and cry when that person is sad. And through those authentic and genuine relationships, we find that we belong, we are known, and we are accepted.”
Sounds like the description of what a women’s ministry should be, doesn’t it?
The end of the book includes discussion questions – perfect for a book club or book study.
Whether we are aware or willing to admit it, comparison is something we all struggle with. What a joy and blessing it would be to find contentment together as a group in a book study! I have no doubt the discussions would be lively and revealing!
Wyma ends the book with this resolution that I am making my own: “I do not want comparison to steal my joy or derail me from the path the Lord has set for me. Therefore, I resolve in the year ahead to stay in my own lane. Run my own race. Stop comparing.”
My prayer for us is that we will all find contentment in a culture of constant comparison. That we will personally and through our ministries rejoice in the achievements of others as they live out God’s calling in the lives. That we will run the race God’s set before us – our race in our lane. And that we will find peace in our circumstances.
Sorry – Giveaway is over!
One reader will receive a copy of I’m Happy for You (Sort Of…Not Really): Finding Contentment in a Culture of Comparison. To enter to win please comment below. I’d love to hear about your struggles with comparison. Winner will be selected at random at 10 EST on Monday, December 7, 2015. Winner must reside in the US or Canada. I will contact the winner via email.
“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”
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