As I scroll through my Instagram feed I see so many of my friends talking about about how great their day is going, how amazing they felt after an incredible workout, and one even shared a picture of that cool new place they tried for lunch today.
Wow, they seem to be doing well. It looks like they have their lives together. I should really start trying to live like that.
I keep scrolling and see images of celebrities I follow just hanging out and “living the life” with all of their fellow rich, talented, and drop-dead gorgeous friends.
How much better would life be if I could have what they have or look how they look?
And that’s where I catch myself and realize that I’ve fallen into the comparison trap once again. I look up from my phone and take a minute to reflect on what I just saw. Next I think about how silly those little thoughts were… I know they aren’t the slightest bit true, but is that really how I feel? I know people hardly post the raw, real details of life on social media. They never say anything about how they’ve been fighting with their husband, how they just gained 5 pounds, and they would never dare to mention anything regarding their financial struggles.
But the scary thing is that I often don’t catch myself before falling into the comparison trap. I see these amazing pictures and videos, read all of the well thought out captions, and listen to the little lies that tell me how much better off I’d be if I could just have what they have, look how they look, and be loved like they’re loved.
The comparison trap is something that affects most of us in some way or another. It’s human nature to believe that the grass is greener on the other side, we all do it. However, the scariest thing I’ve noticed is that social media has transformed our desires from keeping up with the Joneses into keeping up with the Kardashians.
So what would it look like if we were to realize the truth and know that our lives are so much more than those perfectly posed, ultra edited pictures we put out on social media? Well, I think it would truly change the way we live.
When we are finally able to step back and look at the bigger picture we not only realize how social media is deceitful, but we also see just how irrelevant those things we think will make us happy really are. Like, think about it, will owning a new pair of jeans like that pretty model has on really make your day better? Will being able to capture a cool picture of a sunset fulfil your life’s calling? Will having a nicely decorated home like your friend has really fill that void inside of you?
Don’t you see how putting everything into perspective really makes what we think we want in life sound so silly? We all have a void in our hearts that we long to fill, and even though none of these earthly desires will quench our thirst for purpose, there is something that will: Christ.
If you are found in Christ you know that there is so much more to life than these petty, silly things we think we need. Don’t get me wrong, I’m constantly catching myself trying to fill up my life with these empty promises, but recently I’ve been reminded of God’s truth and how he wants me to live. The first thing I’ve learned is that it’s not just about what we do, but it’s about the condition of hearts.
There are so many different factors behind each of our desires and actions. For example, I want my hair to look good in a picture that I post on Instagram so that others will see it and give me compliments. Yes, compliments sound nice, but why do I want them? Well, I want compliments because I want to feel like I’m good at something, I want to feel like I’ve made an achievement, I want to feel loved, and I want to be noticed… so I post a picture of myself where I think my hair looks good.
Instead of going through this whole ordeal, I have to remember that my identity is not found in any of these things, but instead it is found in Christ. My thinking should go something like this instead: I am loved by God and I am his child. My hope is in Christ and I don’t need the approval from people in this world, especially not my Instagram followers. God will be the one who fills me with peace, joy, and hope, nothing else will ever be able to compare to what God can give me.
Have you found yourself in the comparison trap recently? Below are some of my favorite Bible verses that remind me where my identity and purpose is truly found. I hope that these truths can also help you to break free from the comparison trap today.
“For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.”
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”
1 Peter 2:9
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”
1 John 3:1
What are some of your favorite Bible verses? Let us know in the comments section!