Tag Archives: Psalm 139

Stuck In False Comparison

Every story is unique.  Every individual is unique.  It’s pretty cool to see stories play out in the lives of others and to hear the stories that people have lived out up to now and where they are going.  Each of our stories takes a unique pathway that is only unique to us and how God created us to be.  There is a trap that many of us fall into however.  That is the trap of comparing our story to someone else and even wishing we could have a piece of that story.

Tonight I was sitting in a the men’s Bible Study at my church and we continued through a series on The Greater Adventure that Robert Lewis developed.  We are nearing the end of this teaching and this evening we began to talk defining moments in our lives.  There are many that I can point to in my own life.  Some huge ones in the past couple years and many going all the way back, some are tragic and some are great.

During this study, it was shown that part of putting this adventure together is setting time to reflect on our unique design.  Something came to me that I remember Morgan Snyder teaching on at the Become Good Soil Intensive and that was dealing with a spirit of false comparison.  How often have you tried looking at your story and then began to compare yourself to others?  Have you ever seen someone else’s story and thought to yourself, “I sure wish that was a part of my story.” “I sure wish I had a career like that.”  “I wish I was as great a husband and/or dad as that man is, or appears to be.”  There’s something in each of us, in our false self that often falls into this trap of comparison.  Maybe it’s not even wishing that you had a part of another story.  Maybe it’s diminishing your own story, thinking it’s not has significant as another person.  Morgan shared that in this spirit of false comparison we compare part of our story to part of another man story.

I love this teaching, because it’s been so helpful for me, as I have fallen in this trap of false comparison.  What was revealed and only after continued review of the teaching and then in reflecting on the study tonight did it sink in that God only tells us our own story.  My story is my own.  Psalm 139, “You have examined my heart and know everything about me….You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb”  This is so helpful to remember and think about.

Morgan adds in this teaching that once you get visibility on another man’s story, you realize that you don’t want any other man’s story but your own.  Nobody gets everything and it costs everyone something.  Meaning that nobody has it all figured out.  No matter how good someone story looks on the surface, there is always going to be something there, that you will realize that you don’t to have any part of, just has there is something in your story that others would not want to have any part of.  Just know this, it is so easy to get caught up in comparison and I’m so glad that the Father clarified this even more tonight.  So much so, I had to log on and write about it.  My story is unique to me, just as your story is unique to you.  Your story is the best story for your own heart, uniquely designed and woven by God himself.

When you get this and when you realize the power in this, this sets you up for even more freedom.  We can then stop worrying about the wrong things and begin to shift the focus more inward and truly get a clarifying view of the beauty of our own unique design.  Just to know that God loved you enough to make you in His own image, but designed with your own unique design and flavor.  How cool is that?  Why would you even want to have any part of something that God did not uniquely create in you and for you.

This is so helpful to remember.  You are unique to you and nobody else.  You don’t want any part of another’s story.  It was not a part of your fearfully and wonderfully made unique design.  All it does it feed a foolish habit that promotes envy and competition and begins to feed into feelings of our own inferiority which as mentioned before causes us to diminish ourselves.  Avoid that trap and don’t allow yourself to get stuck in a spirit of false comparison.

No Matter Where You Turn He’s There – Psalm 139

I’ve taken part in a couple of exercises this month that have painted a really vivid picture of my life.  I wrote about the spiritual life map I put together when I was in Virginia for my campus Intensive course at Liberty.  That was a tough exercise, but it helped me to gain a real clear picture of the journey that God has had me on from the very beginning.  It helped me to visualize many different parts of my life, the good and bad, and from it, I came to a distinct realization that through it all, God never abandoned me.

This past Sunday, my pastor issued a very unique challenge to us.  We are in a series talking about not only his journey, but that of others in the church who have come up to share their own personal testimony.  First, we are often challenged to memorize verses.  This week was Romans 8:1, “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”  A short and simple verse, but the meaning behind that is so powerful.  I was breaking it down this morning in my own study and what that verse really means.  Condemnation is derived from the Greek word katakrima which means penalty.  We were under a penalty of death before Christ because of our fall.  In Romans 5:16, Paul says that judgement came from one transgression, from Adam, which resulted in our condemnation, but God gave us the free gift of Jesus Christ, who arose from many transgressions, which justifies us in Him.  Jesus took all of our sin and filth on Himself.  Conquered it and the grave, and rose to life to the Father’s right hand, interceding for us.

So we all have a story and journey that brings us through good and bad times.  Through sin and out of sin.  The challenge issued that was unique, was to read Psalm 139.  Then not only read it, but personalize it.  Re-write it a way that was personal to ourselves.  It was a very unique challenge.  Something I had not done before, taking a piece a Scripture and personalizing it to my life.  Here are the first 4 verses of this Psalm:

1O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
2You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
You understand my thought from afar.
3You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
4Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.

So this was a challenge and I was up to, or so I thought.  I didn’t know how I would tackle it.  I sat down Tuesday and read the Psalm a few times and in a couple different translations.  It was a daunting task it seemed at this point.  How do I personalize this Psalm to me?  I opened my journal and before I knew, pen began to go to work.  At first it was very generic, yes the Lord knows me, even before I was conceived, He knew me.  But then it began to get personal.  It went into the depths of my life.  No matter what the next statement was, it always included you were there or you knew or your hands were there.

I’ve had some powerful experiences with God, especially in 2015.  This experience pierced me right in the heart.  It seems so cliche to say and I think often times we take this for granted, if we even think about it.  The simple Truth of it all that I’ve discovered my walk with Him and in this exercise is that God is in every single aspect of our lives, whether we know it or not or whether we want to accept Him or not.  He knew  and knows every single decision we are going to make, whether it turns away from Him or not.  He knows every single aspect of our being; our spirit, soul, and body, our heart, mind, and will.  He created it, so of course He knows us.

There are so many great mysteries that God has yet to unveil, but His presence in our lives is one that is laid out before us and we are told vividly about.  God loves us and is with us through all of our high and low points in life.  When are turn away and when we call out to Him.  Yes, He knows our sin and the darkness of our lives, but through His son Jesus Christ, we are no longer condemned to the punishment we deserve.  That being said, God is always there looking to pull us out of the depths of our sin.  He’s never abandoned us even when we can’t feel it and our so overwhelmed by guilt, shame, wounds, and just life in general.  He is always there and is out to restore each of us to Him.  No matter where you turn, He is there to pursue you.

I will re-issue the same challenge. Read Psalm 139 and the sit down and personalize it to you. You won’t be disappointed, I promise.