Everyday we are faced with a choice. “Do I keep my peace and walk my own journey, or do I try to keep pace with those around me”?
Making comparisons will tempt you to try and keep pace with everyone else. Instead of focusing on running our own race, comparing ourselves will lead to us trying to run like someone else. I read a great quote recently. It said, “every moment you spend comparing yourself is a minute you spend subtly accusing God of short changing you.”
Whose race are you trying to run? Has comparing and looking too much at what others are doing in life caused you to feel like somehow you’ve been shortchanged by God, and He’s run out of the “blessings” for you?
I run for exercise and as I’ve learnt some things about myself and lessons I can apply to my everyday life along the way.
1. I need to run at my pace. When I run with others, who inevitably have longer legs than me I end up hurting myself. I have to run at my pace, because if I try to keep up with others when I’m not matched in height or fitness to them I start to feel deficient and even embarrassed at my ability.
But how often do we do that in everyday life? We are constantly tempted by the world around us; through social media, advertising and just being part of society, to compare ourselves and then try and live life how other people live it, looking how they look, and moving like they move. When we try to be someone other than who we were created to be we run the risk of doubting God’s love, goodness and unique plan and purpose for our life. What’s worse we lose our peace and rest in life.
2. Don’t bother worrying about what others may or may not be thinking. I run alongside a very busy road. I’m sure everyone in the city is driving along that particular road as I run, but if I worried too much about what they might be thinking as I run past them I’d never get out the front door. Instead I’ve taken the attitude of hoping I inspire others if they happen to glance my way. “If she’s out running, maybe I can too”.
Too often we spend wasted time worrying about what others might be thinking about us. It’s unproductive and energy sapping and not what God wants for us. God thinks we are awesome and all of heaven is cheering us on. So go for it and forget about what others might think.
3. When running stay focused on where you are going. Have a goal. It’s much easier to last the distance on a run and in life if you have a point of focus; a goal to reach, whether it be to reach the end of the block, or to fulfill a dream you’ve had in life.
There are so many distractions and opportunities for discouragement. It’s important to not look to the left, the right or even behind, but firmly up ahead. Some wise words from the bible say it this way, “But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.,(Philippians 3:13-14)
“Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.” (Proverbs 4:25)
Today, run your race at your own pace. Let peace fill your heart and mind. We all have a life to live, but let God be your coach and guide. Follow Him and His way of doing things and “let peace, not pace” be your motto and you’ll reach the finish line having run your race well.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Hebrews 12:1)
Prayer: Lord I ask that you reveal to me where I compare myself, and try to keep pace with others, instead of simply running my own race. Please let your peace and wisdom guide me. I choose not to play the comparison game any more, and trust you to bless and prosper all I do. I want to care more about what you think about me. Help me to do that. Lord. In Jesus name. Amen