Category Archives: Encouragement


Blinded by Comparison

I often find myself saying it to others, “Comparison is the thief of all joy!” And it’s so very, very true.

And yet, I still find myself all too often imbibing in comparing my life, my possessions, my haves and have-nots, and ultimately my story to those of others.

I was in one of those moods earlier this week, and I was elbow deep in comparison. And then I read this blog post from Nicki Koriarz on Proverbs 31. And she writes…

“The world loves to shout about success, but we seldom speak of our secret sorrows… And comparison is often a quiet, sorrowful place we don’t invite others into.”  

And I so identified with those 2 lines.

Perhaps you too?!?

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“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” 2 Corinthians 10:12 (NIV)

“Have you ever had a situation that ended up not being anything like it appeared to be?

I was off on an adventure with my friend Amy. A “junking” adventure. You know, sorting through what some consider trash and turning it into home décor treasure.

But our adventure on an old farm led me in a completely different decorating direction. Because somehow, a sweet baby donkey ended up coming home with me.

Only problem was, I discovered donkeys can’t live alone. So, I did some negotiating and ended up with not one, but TWO donkeys. And according to the man selling me these donkeys, the girl was pregnant.

Basically, it was a BOGO (Buy One-Get One) deal, and I was thrilled.

Since my husband and I are first-generation farmers (read: we have no idea what we’re doing), surprisingly we found out donkeys are pregnant for 11 to 14 months!

And so began: Baby Donkey Watch.

For months, I went outside each day to love on Helen and her ever-growing belly. I posted pictures on social media and everyone became excited about this coming baby donkey.

But 11 months went by, then 12, 13, 14 months … and still no baby donkey. Yet Helen kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger.

Puzzled, I called the donkey expert to come figure out this situation. I explained things and he gave Helen a quick once-over. Then he said to me (in his deep southern accent), “Ma’am, I’m sorry to tell you this, but that donkey isn’t pregnant.”


Oh. My. Word.

I could not believe it. I mean, I had felt Helen’s stomach move! And why was she getting wider and wider?

Things are not always as they seem.

Honestly, when I think about one of the greatest struggles of my life, comparison, this is a truth I’ve had to pour into my heart over and over.

Comparison tricks me into looking at what others have and who they are and I wonder if somehow, they measure higher in God’s eyes than I do. When I look at others’ success, it’s easy to fall into a destructive mindset. And as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 10:12, comparison actually makes us unwise.

“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” (2 Corinthians 10:12)

Wisdom helps us see beyond every seemingly perfect situation and know there’s usually another story being written. That story is rarely told.

The world loves to shout about success, but we seldom speak of our secret sorrows.

And comparison is often a quiet, sorrowful place we don’t invite others into.

Helen’s stomach grew and grew because she was just … well, eating a lot. Her new home is a pasture with maybe too much grass to feed on. So, dreadfully, I had to pop open my phone and craft a social media post to fill in the entire baby-donkey-watch fan base on this outcome.

People were disappointed, but mostly just laughing with us, not at us.

And I know it’s a super trivial example, but each time I look at Helen I remember, things aren’t always as they seem. And I want to be wise when I look at the world around me so comparison doesn’t compromise the unique story God is writing through my life.”


1 Peter 2:9, “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.” (NIV)




When You Don’t Feel Good Enough…

There are so many days, so many moments, so many interactions where I feel less than. Not enough. Lacking.

Not pretty enough. Not smart enough. Not interesting enough. Not engaging enough.

Unliked. Unloved. Misunderstood.

Lonely. Tired. Seeking approval.

Life is messy, unknown, scary, and uncertain. And everything this earth gives, you earn. You strive for. You work really, really hard for.

It’s all about status, performance, what we can control, and what we can manipulate.

In a world where love and acceptance are so often performance-based privileges, it seems love must be earned… and once it has been earned, it must be kept.

Because of the limited conditions placed on the world’s version of love, it can be easy to evaluate our relationship with Christ based on how well we do. If we can say things are “basically” under control, we feel good about ourselves. We decide we’ve done just good enough to approach God’s throne room and ask things of Him, or to enjoy His presence.

But when we look around and see chaos and one mess after another after another, we decide we must be doing something wrong. That we are stuck in a rat race of our own invention and our own making, devoid of an escape. We somehow determine God isn’t available to us in that “not good enough” season — or He’s waiting on us to figure it all out before we can once again approach Him.

But, nothing could be further from the Truth.

When He first came to this earth, the Angels did not announce His birth to the Kings, Rulers, and wealthy of the day, but to lowly shepherds watching their flocks by night. And He placed a star in the sky to announce it to learned Magi in a faraway land; who, if they’d only follow, would unlock the greatest story ever told and the greatest gift ever given.

He came to heal the sick, give comfort to the broken, offer forgiveness to the ones that society had forgotten and shunned.

He met them in those broken places.

He dwelt among them. Among us. In all the muck, chaos,and out-of-control situations the world can throw our way. He knows, He understands.

Simply because you belong to Him, you are known by a forgiving, gracious Savior, and you are valuable to Him. All of that combined, makes you very worthy of pre-approval.

No need to prove anything! 

If I could just remind my heart of this when I have these feelings of inadequacy, these moments of feeling nonacceptance, and those nights of loneliness imagining I am truly “alone”, instead of listening to the murmurings of the Evil One.

Write these promises on your hearts.

Remind yourself of them each day.

Place scriptures around your house. On your desk. Or on the dashboard of your car. Places you will see them every day.

His love and acceptance is not performance based, not given on merits of attractiveness, and not doled out to those who have worked hard to “earn it.” Nothing we could ever say or do could EVER earn His love. It’s the only type of love that is freely given with nothing expected in return, but everything in this life to gain!

I want to be swallowed up by this sort of love. By His acceptance and His stamp of approval.

Uniquely made and gifted to carry out His plans for you; your own unique life-print!