Some say comparison is the thief of joy. I’d like to add that comparison is the thief of security.
Yesterday was Valentine’s Day.
(Sorry to bring it up again. I’m sure you’re just ready to move on.)
My husband and I have had 5 of these holidays together now, and I’ll be honest: we’re just not that into it. We aren’t huge gift-givers and we don’t observe this holiday to the extent that a lot of other people do. We may use Valentines Day as an excuse to eat out for dinner, but that’s usually the extent of it.
Because I know this is just the way we are, I feel secure in the way we celebrate Valentine’s Day. At least…I do until I start to compare my experience to that of others. I see extravagant gifts, roses, chocolate, fancy date nights, cute couple photos…and I begin to ask myself if we’re doing something wrong.
Maybe you experienced this yesterday too.
You were happily single, until you couldn’t scroll fast enough to get past the cute date nights and flowers. You were fine with chilling alone in bed with a bag of popcorn and One Tree Hill, until you received a snap of the Galentine’s Party happening next door. You were content with a low-key date night, until you heard about your girlfriend’s extravagant scavenger hunt, leading up to candles and diamonds and pearls.
I remember experiencing this with homecoming dress shopping too. Five years ago when I bought my high school homecoming dress, I absolutely loved it. However the moment I looked- with a lens of comparison- at some of the other girls’ gowns, I began to second-guess if my dress was all I had thought it was.
I realize these are superficial examples- valentines and formal dresses- but the principle remains the same:
Comparison hinders our ability to appreciate every lovely thing we have by stealing our security.It takes something we feel totally secure about, and taints it with doubts and disdain.
In life, when we want more security we take action to protect ourselves. We change our passwords and pins; we install firewalls and we carry pepper spray. I hate to break it you, but the security that comparison snatches away doesn’t really have that easy of a fix. There’s no special trick to feeling more secure. Rather, we need to look at where we are finding our security in the first place.
If I find my security in who I am and what I do, I will continue to struggle with insecurity for the rest of my life. But when I find my security in the One who created me, I will find peace and confidence, not because of who I am, but because of who He is.
So with that security shift in mind, I want to tell you 3 Truths about yourself on this February 15th:
You are loved. Not because you’ve earned it. Not because your boyfriend says so. Not because your friends say so, but because your God says you are loved. The opinion of man will wax and wane, but the Word of the Lord will stand forever. His Word is your security.
You are valuable. Not because you are smart. Not because of your success. Not because of the price tag on your engagement ring, but because your perfect God said you were worth dying for. And when He died, He said, “it is finished.” There’s nothing else you can do, because He did it all. His death is your security.
You are cherished. Not because you’re beautiful. Not because you’re funny. Not because you would make a good wife. Not because you say all the right things. But because your God knit you together in your mother’s womb. He dreamed of you before you were born. He created you uniquely with a purpose. And when He saw that you were dying, He breathed new life into you. His sovereign hand is your security.
Valentine’s Day and Homecoming Courts- they come and they go. Next week you may forget how you felt on “Single Awareness Day.” For some of you, it’s a sting that you’re convinced will last a lifetime. But I want you to know that you don’t have to measure your worth by this day, and you don’t have to settle for an unstable security.
You can find lasting security in a God who never changes, never fails, and never leaves. I can’t say you won’t still compare and you won’t still have doubts on this side of heaven. But you’ll have hope and peace that surpass all you could receive from any other man-made security. I can promise you that.
With Love & Freedom,