Sometimes I think too highly of myself.
Maybe more than sometimes.
OKAY, not all the time, but a lot of the time, I think too highly of myself.
And I know it’s because God is changing my heart, but recently, I’ve noticed just how often I compare myself to others and how often I think I’m better than others.
I bet that person doesn’t read their Bible everyday…
If everyone tithed like we did…
I probably love God more than that person…
WHAT AM I DOING??!
That is so nasty. I literally repulse myself with my attitude sometimes and quickly ask God to change my heart. Because I don’t want to be that girl who thinks–even just in her head occasionally so that no one else knows–that I am better than anyone else.
Because I fail constantly. And normally, if I’m ever feeling smug about myself or the things I do well, it means a pretty big fall is coming where I get to scrape myself off the floor and humbly start again. God has a pretty good sense of humor about my pride issues. Plus, I don’t want others to judge me the way I’m judging them because, um, yikes.
In church a few months ago, I caught myself thinking about how awesome I was and quickly asked God to shut that down. His response was immediate and almost audible. It was like he was standing right next to me and said, “Can you imagine if everyone here was truly was like you?”
So I started thinking about how my church would be if everyone was like me…because that’s really what comparing myself to others comes down to, the idea that if more people were like me, things would be so much better. Somewhere inside I must think I’m some kind of gift if I compare others to myself so often.
Here’s what church would look like if everyone was like me:
-Nothing would ever start on time; everything would be about five minutes late. Sometimes ten.
-We’d be over budget constantly, not a lot, but definitely over.
-Not very friendly. Not because we don’t love people, but because we like to love people from afar, not close-up.
-We would have the worst-sounding choir of all time. The only thing that might top the horrible choir would be the more horrible-sounding worship band.
-Our church would be very impatient. Very. Very.
-We’d have a super-cool, flashy bulletin, but no one would want to get up and preach because it makes everyone nervous.
-No one would be available to work in the nursery or children’s areas ever. Because little kids are totally not our thing.
-We’d be a very moody church. But chocolate would make us all better.
-We’d struggle with body issues, trusting others, and giving up control. Oh my gosh, there would be so many fights about control.
-The church would laugh at inappropriate times and maybe have a little bit of a potty mouth. (Okay, not a little bit, we’d totally have a potty mouth.)
-The bathrooms would never be cleaned. The church HATES cleaning bathrooms.
All of the sudden, my church sounds like a pretty crappy place to be a part of. And while I admit this list makes me laugh a little, it’s not that funny that I’ve got lots of pride issues inside that are pretty ugly. I appreciate God pointing them out and letting me laugh at myself, but he also wants to help me clean them up. He doesn’t like that I don’t always act humbly and I often do not put others before me. He doesn’t like that I let pride stand in the way of serving him better, of reflecting him more.
Sometimes it’s annoying when you ask Jesus to make you more like him and to show you areas you’ve been neglecting and then he actually does that. (Did I just say it’s annoying when God answers our prayers? Yes, yes, I did.) Because then the real work starts, and it’s normally messy for a while. And sometimes, sometimes, it’s just always going to be messy. But you keep going because this relationship, this journey, you’re on with Jesus is for the long haul.
It’s not always easy, but it’s always worth it.
(Side note: If this post doesn’t sound like you, if you’re actually that person that thinks everyone is better than you, that everyone but you has it together (because that’s me sometimes, too), can I tell you that is of the enemy? You have gifts and talents that we, the Church, need and if you’re minimizing your abilities because you don’t feel like you measure up, please stop. That can and is just as destructive as thinking too highly of yourself. I get both sides and depending on the day, I’m either one or the other. But they’re both wrong. Blah, I’m a mess.)