An Open Letter to Comparison

Dear Comparison, 

You wicked ass. You are the robber of joy and the thief of peace.

You tell barren women that they cannot measure up to their mother-friends. 

You whisper lies of self-hatred to the guy at the gym who cannot quite lift the weights like his buddy. 

You shout at the single woman that she will never be loved and never be noticed and to just give up. 

You urge the insecure and the downtrodden to feed their need to be noticed and their need to be right all the time. They cannot even rest for one conversation because of you. They have to interrupt, show someone else up, or prove their point no matter the cost. I watch them and I weep inside for their worthless and fruitless fight. YOU ARE NOT WORTH IT, COMPARISON.

You steal sleep from the woman who doesn’t like what she sees in the mirror. 

You drive daggers into the heart of the hurting fellow who wishes he could make the girl see him for the good man he is.

You tell the artists they because they are not like their peers, they are not true artists. 

You sit loftily on the shoulder of the musician who doesn’t play the one popular instrument at church on Sunday. 

You offer no rest. Only striving. And for nothing. 

We compare our clothes, our bodies, our marriages, our children, our work, our very lives to one another. We believe and we live the lie that we have to do so. It steals each day before it even begins. 

Shame on you, Comparison. You are thief and a liar. 

I read somewhere recently that “sometimes the way to win is to never enter the race.” I wish we all could forget the race. It is our own race we are to run, not each other’s. We forget that. We lace up our shoes, line up at the starting line, and tear each other to shreds when the whistle blows. It is all because of you, Comparison. 

But you, even you, can be beaten at your own game. We can stop listening, you know. We can drop out of the race and try as you might to make us soldier on, we can refuse and, instead, find rest. We can be at peace. We can see the joy in each morning – joy unmarred by the need to win. 

Comparison, your undoing is that you only have as much control as we give you. We don’t have to listen. My brothers and sisters will not always be in your clutches. They will rise above and they will find their hearts free to live their respective journeys well outside of your reach. Your time is limited. 

 

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