INSPIRE Series: Comparison The Sneaky Shifty Eyed Thief Of Joy (by Lauren Cornwell)

I am so so thankful that Aleks allowed me to contribute on her blog and am so incredibly blessed to have found such a great community of believers in the land of blogging.
I am going to be kind of vulnerable right now and share something I have been struggling with since, well, pre-Backstreet Boys and shopping at Wet Seal. Comparison. As much as I hate to admit it, I do it. I was always awkwardly tall and wished I could be shorter like my friends in middle school. I went to prom in flip flops, refusing to be taller than my date. I wanted the clothes, the car, the cute boyfriend in high school. I wanted to look like the girls on the covers of YM and Seventeen Magazine. I felt like Jennifer Gardner's younger self in 13 going on 30. I kept being bombarded with these worldly views of beauty.
Then one Sunday during college, our church was doing a Love, Sex and God series and we went through the Song of Songs. I remember reading 1:6 "Do not stare at me because I am dark, because I am darkened by the sun." I normally would have skipped right over this but our pastor made it a point to stop here. During biblical times women that were tan were not considered as beautiful... wait, that is quite the opposite of today, but stay with me. If you were tan during that time you were considered working class, because you were out in the fields literally slaving away, and she was embarrassed of her dark skin. But over and over again her lover told her how beautiful she was (my favorite was when he likened her teeth to a flock of sheep, but I digress). He kept building her up until she believed that she was safe in his arms.

At that moment, I knew God was speaking to me. I could keep listing off my flaws to him and He would keep telling me how beautiful I was. His banner over me is love.
So this is what I leave you with, dear sister. You are so so very beautiful. He did not make a mistake when He knit you together, when He created you. There is no need to compare, because you are incomparable. You have been put on this earth to do amazing things, to be a friend, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a teacher,a blogger, a child of God and there is no one like you. My prayer for you today is that you truly believe this. That you and I stop comparing ourselves to each other and start building others up. And to really deep down in your heart know that you are lovely.

About the author: 

Lauren Cornwell is an middle school art teacher in Hickory, North Carolina. She loves Jesus, salsa and chips, vanilla cupcakes, naps, Pixar movies, running, glitter, thrifting and her hubster, Josh.

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Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his.