On a gorgeous summer day, I’m going to offer a quick, cautionary word. In no wise is it meant to be predictive or prescriptive of all marriages in this land or in any land over the sea. For each union is as unique as the two people who comprise it, and there’s only One Who knows every thread that’s been woven or knotted into the tapestry that is yours…your marriage, your spouse, and your God.
It was some time ago that Mr. Schrock had an interesting conversation with a friend of his who is an attorney. Whose practice includes divorces.
What he told him that day was surprising and sobering. In his business, he said, many of the divorces were initiated by–women. And one of the significant factors that he’d observed was–Facebook.
According to him, women would look at the pictures and posts of others in their newsfeeds, and they’d turn to discontentment. Discontentment, an ugly, satanic weed…
A weed that starts with a seed. “She’s got what I don’t have.” Or, “She’s got what I deserve.” Or, “Her husband is better than mine.”
Here’s the truth. There is nothing good that comes from comparison. Ever. And there’s nothing pure and holy and right that a disgruntled discontentment can birth. Ever.
First of all, it is impossible to know from a few pictures or posts exactly what another person is going through. “She” may be hiding a great well of pain or insecurity.
You don’t know that.
Secondly, if “her” pictures and posts are exactly as they appear to be and God’s blessings are rich in her life, then quite possibly “she’s” allowed God to do the hard and winnowing work. And perhaps you’re seeing the gold, post fire.
You don’t know that, either.
Something that a wise and holy God has taught me when I get caught up in the comparison trap is to say, “Bless her! Bless her family, her talent, her ministry. Bless all that concerns her. Amen.”
One of the lies that comparison whispers is that there is less for you. If God has seen fit to bless another, then you are smaller, and your own gifts and talents pale in comparison’s ghastly light.
What a lie. And so what? So what if “she’s” better than you? So what if “she’s” got what you don’t…including the husband you think you deserve, or the one you’ve decided you want? So. What. Like Jesus said, “What is that to thee? Follow thou Me.”
An aggrieved, discontented spirit will lead us places we never thought we’d go. It will take us farther than we ever meant to run, and it will cost far, far more than we ever intended to pay.
Protection comes in being plain grateful, and that all sincere, for the things that we do have. The husband that we’ve got. The house in which we live. The imperfect kids that we’re parenting. The gifts and talents we have.
The bottom line (here it comes) is that no one has it all together. Not one of us has the perfect life. All of us carry hidden pain, human weakness. And we are–all of us–needin’ love.
We can envy, or we can love. It really comes down to that.
I choose to love.