I'd purchased some new clothes so I was feeling pretty good about myself when I walked into my friend's house. But the minute I laid eyes on her and our other good friend, my heart sank. Wow. As always, they looked so good.
I went to an exercise class at the YMCA, proud of myself for working out, happy about the new muscle definition forming in my own body, until I caught sight of the instructor. Throughout the class I admired her toned form, athletic ability and grace. Catching sight of my own awkward reflection in the mirror made me cringe.
Later in the day I envied another woman's tanned skin, flowing hair and perfectly polished nails. Insignificance crept in again. How could I ever get it all together?
But why should the successes of others make me feel small? Why do I let their beauty take away from mine or nullify the positive changes I make? Why do I use their attractiveness as a measuring stick instead of purely enjoying it?
Tell me I'm not alone in this.
Why can't I acknowledge and applaud the beautiful qualities of others the same way I'd marvel at a fine work of art? Why do I project expectations on myself? Why can't I say, "Wow, God, nice job on that sister?!"
Satan has tricked me. But not anymore. I refuse to listen to his taunting, stealing my joy, telling me I'm not good enough. I purpose to notice the beauty in others and praise our Lord for His stunning work. I plan to look on with a smile, soaking in the handiwork of a creative God. I'll even peer into the mirror finding something nice instead of focusing on my own weaknesses.
I will appreciate instead of compare.
I will delight in her gorgeous green eyes, her flawless skin, her sculpted nose, her muscular arms. I will enjoy the curl in her hair, her pleasing proportions, her bright smile. I will praise God for His masterpiece without relating it me.
Will you join me? Will you help raise an army of appreciative women unified in recognizing God's finest work, instead of establishing ineffective bodies closed off in the loneliness of comparison?
Will you appreciate instead of compare?
The king is enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord.