Answer your calling, serve from your sweet spot and stop looking over your shoulder, comparing your ministry to someone else.
Serve where you are planted.
“If I want him to remain until I come,” Jesus answered, “what is that to you? As for YOU follow me.”
John 21:22 (CSB-Emphasis Mine)
I want you to know, as God gives me words to pen, they come from a place of deep work in my own heart. He is ever pruning me, planting His Word deeper into my heart. It is sometimes painful. Growing pains typically are.
Theodore Roosevelt said this: “Comparison is the thief of all joy.”
As women, comparison is our biggest enemy. Social media has given us a way to present our best selves and with it, the need to scroll through the feed checking to see if we made the cut. Right?
In John’s last chapter we see a picture of Peter doing the same. John 21:15-19 is a picture of Peter’s restoration after his denial of Christ, three times. Side note: How often do I deny Him? OUCH! One would think restoration would be enough. But, it is not. Comparison moves Peter to take his eyes off Jesus, looking over his shoulder, worrying about the other guy.
“So Peter turned around and saw the disciple Jesus loved following them, the one who had leaned back against Jesus at the supper and asked, ‘Lord, who is the one the one that’s going to betray you?’ When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, ‘Lord, what about him?’
‘If I want him to remain until I come, Jesus answered, ‘what is that to you? As for you, follow me.'” John 21:20-22 (CSB)
Jesus restores Peter after his betrayal, and he wants to know about this other fellow. “What about him?”
Peter, one of many, I most want to have coffee and long conversations with; he’s not much different than you or me. Jesus has just handed him his ministry, his walking orders.
- Feed my lambs.
- Do you love me?
- Feed my sheep.
- You will die for me.
- Follow me.
Straight up, no questions asked, Jesus, lays one of the most significant ministries we see in the New Testament in Peter’s hands. Immediately, Peter, looks over his shoulder, “What about him?”
Comparison, robs us of joy, taints our service, questions our motives, and causes heartache, to yourself and possibly others.
What follows is painful, yet straightforward. “What is that to you? As for you, follow me.”
With a posture of surrendered obedience, your service, your ministry is yours. It is the most important thing, regardless of what it is. It does not matter one skinny minute, what mine may be, or what so and so with the perfect Instagram feed and the large following, is doing either.
What matters, is that I, that you, are following Jesus, serving from a place of surrendered obedience, and doing the next thing.
How do we do this?
Start with this:
- Become a student of His Word.
- Find a godly mentor.
- Grow in the life and manner of prayer.
- Seek godly counsel.
- Listen.. “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 (NIV)
- Have a posture of surrendered obedience.
Comparison moves Peter to take his eyes off Jesus. Comparison drives us to take our eyes off Jesus, chasing perfection.
Perfection is a subject for another day! Smile!
I want to close with Psalm 46:10 in the CSB translation:
“Stop your fighting, and know that I am God, exalted among the nations, exalted on the earth.”
I must do my work and you must do your work and we must stop comparing.
Gifts of Grace
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I’m blessed to serve you in this place, to share with you the Gifts of Grace as I journey through the wilderness. I picture you across the table, hands wrapped tightly around your cup, sharing life, and laughter, and tears. As I share with you, my daily struggles, I long to hear what yours may be. You can do that by commenting below or reaching out to me here.
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