Compared to What?

My youngest son's discouraged face told me there was more to his frustration in receiving a "C" on his spelling test. I saw there was deep emotion waiting to be expressed. I offered a listening ear and a patient hug, and he began to share, "I'm not as smart as everyone else in this family." He thought he wasn't as good as his siblings, and he wanted to be an "A" student, too. His broken heart reflected my own childhood experience with insensitive teachers comparing my performance in school to high-achieving, older siblings.

Comparing your children can be dangerous. "But they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise" (2 Corinthians 10:12b). God has uniquely gifted each of your homeschooled children and values each one. Encourage them to find their place in the family and then in the world. A sense of self-worth is developed as your children find areas in which God created them to excel. My son's niche was finally found in math, music, and fishing. Hands down, neither his brother nor his sisters could top him in those areas.

How many times a day do you compare yourself to others? Do you wish you looked like someone else, had her home or money, or were as smart as she? God knew this was a problem for all mankind when He gave His commandment, "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's" (Exodus 20:17). Compared to Christ, we all fall short of the glory of God. Let Him lead you into His perfect will for your life and find the joyful niche He has created just for you. There is no better place to be for now and eternity!

Lord, thank You for giving me significance in this life. Help me remember I have value because of the great price that was paid for me on the cross. I choose to look at You today instead of comparing myself to others. In Jesus' name, Amen.

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Comments(8 comments)

LYNDA B 10/16/2008 05:09:04

It is so very easy to compare your teaching skills with someone else, and you come up short. This article is very timely, and it is a eye opener too!!!

Jody F 10/16/2011 18:39:35

Thank you so much for this devotional. I've been homeschooling for 12 years and it is easy to fall into the "insensitive" just get it done attitude. It is true that each child is unique and shouldn't be compared to anyone but themselves. Thanks again for the reminder.

KATHY S 10/16/2012 05:05:23

Comparison is a veru hard thing. I tortured myself with comparisons through my teenage years, my twenties and even until 30. Then at 33 when I had my son, I didn't care so much anymore what people thought. I guess because I had this wonderful little baby who needed and loved me so very much. It didn't matter anymore what others thought of me.

What was hard then was having a handicap child and my friends always comparing their children and where they were at when my chikld had therapists at our house 7 times a week, unable to even eat normal things that others his age were eating due to sensory issues. Unable to crawl, hold his little head up straight etc.

He's come so far. And I love homeschooling also, because I'm his teacher, and I get to tell him how wonderful he is, and how he is the best!

It doesn't matter where other children are at, he's perfect in Jesus's eyes and mine.

ALEZA J 10/16/2012 05:15:46

I haven't started homeschooling yet, my son isn't old enough. My oldest son, Aiden is going to be 3 soon and was born premature 16 weeks. My younger son, Caleb just turned 1. They are very close developmentally, and I find myself comparing them. My younger son is little ahead of the normal and my older is behind about a year in many areas. My mom always told me growing up to compare myself to me and no one else. I always have to stop myself from comparing my sons, and look at their own individual progress. Aiden is doing well compared to what he was doing a few months ago. Thankful for reminding me when I was becoming discouraged looking at the goals early intervention has for my son. We can do it!!!

TONY S 10/16/2012 07:29:32

Julia S

Thank you for this important reminder!

BRANDI S 10/16/2012 08:16:39

Sometimes, it\'s easy to compare ourselves to others and emphasize where we fall short. With platforms like Facebook, many people boast and advertise the best of themselves making it easy to fall into this trap. The Lord should always be our level of attainment...and this devotional was a great reminder of that.

PAMELA R 10/16/2012 14:54:51

I needed this today. I am having a Tupperware party in two days and feel like I have to get my home looking a certain way, because I know that some who are coming have fancier homes than I do. I just have to be me, and not try to be like someone else. God has blessed each of us differently, and wants us to glorify Him with what He has given us.

TONIA R 10/17/2012 14:18:10

Wow!! What a powerful devotion! I am always comparing myself to other homeschool parents and their \"smart\" children. I have a child that is struggling in math and according to \"public\" school she would be 2 grades behind. But In our home she is right where she needs to be. Successfully learning and loving her math. It has taken me years to realize she will learn math on her own timetable not anyone else\'s! The Lord doesn\'t judge us on our academic scores neither should we.

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