We aren’t all the same. I know this isn’t a newsflash, but it’s worth taking a moment to think about.
We are such unique individuals. But unfortunately, this doesn’t always seem to sit well with us. We compare everything from our finances to our intelligence, our homes or our lack thereof, and even our children. We are left feeling like we don’t measure up or like there’s something else we’re supposed to be doing. Comparison almost always leaves us feeling discontent.
Just looking at my own friends, there is such diversity. I have friends that are amazingly crafty, some who are writers, others who care tirelessly for multiple children. Some are single, some are married, some are divorced. I have friends that lift weights, run marathons and some who speak to thousands of people. Some make me laugh out loud regularly and still others love so well that it causes me to beg God for love like they have. We are all so different.
This idea of sameness is Satan’s attack on God’s image within each of us. If you read Genesis, you’re reminded that we are image bearers of God and that we were made in his “likeness” for the individual lives He has given us. He didn’t put us all in the same place, or give us the same jobs, or the same roles…on purpose. Sameness is Satan’s attempt to make us think that we are just that, the same. Buying into the lie of sameness causes us to ignore God-given roles, which eventually leads us to forfeit our unique contributions to this life.
My husband and I are very different from one another. He’s much stronger than I am. He has more confidence than I do and he’s much more bold. He’s incredibly discerning and fields confrontation like a pro. He’s a great leader and handles God’s Word with great study and care. I love what he does and I celebrate him for who God has made him to be. There have been times in our marriage where we’ve been really competitive with one another. It’s probably human nature to do this with the people closest to us, but it leads to dissatisfaction with one another and fighting. We need each other and the unique way God has made us. I enjoy caring for our kids and serving our family. And he would tell you how thankful he is that I am the one who stays home and cares for our girls. But, it’s not the only thing I can do. God has gifted me as well in a number of areas, but I see this as a huge contribution to our family. Prior to being a Mom, I was a nurse. God was preparing me even then to be a Mother. I used to bathe adults, assess cardiac needs and care for patients’ wounds. Now, I get the joy of washing chubby little toes and shaping four little lady’s hearts to know and love God. God created me for this and He prepared me too. So, while I could scream “liberty for women” and other such nonsense, I instead choose to celebrate who God has made me and my God-given role for this season of life.
When I compare my life to my husband’s his looks much more fun…well, sometimes. I love the camaraderie that he has with his co-workers, who are his dear friends. I’m a people-person, so sometimes the days get lonely at home, even though conversation with a 6, 5, 3, and 1-year-old is always “interesting”. I love that he gets to ride in the car quietly on his way to and from work and doesn’t have little girls screaming about their milk cup dropping or what their sister just did to them. I also admire the achievement that comes with hard work and that someone might say, “Good job! We appreciate all you’re doing.” While my husband does say these things and my children often say “thank you”, I unfortunately desire the praise of others when my focus comes off what God has called me to.
The things I love about his job might have to stop there. Because, I pray for him as he tirelessly studies God’s Word to prepare yet another sermon for Sunday morning. Have you ever considered the weight that it is to speak God’s truth boldly week after week? Or the criticism that can come with speaking the truth? So as you look at someone else’s situation with all the reasons why their situation is better or why you do a better job at what you do, remember that we weren’t called to be each other. We each contribute something special and we need to do a better job of appreciating one-another’s differences.
God has uniquely designed you for the roles and responsibilities He has given you, too. Embrace who God has made you and flourish in all you’ve been given to do. Ask Him for strength for today for YOUR calling. If you are surrendered to the call God has on your life, you need not worry so much about what everyone else is doing. You are an image bearer of God. Bear Him well!
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14
For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10