“Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else.” Galatians 6:4 (NLT)
The admonition from the portion of Scripture above is for each individual to do his work diligently and with a spirit of excellence. The idea being that, once you have satisfied that criteria, you will have no need to compare yourself with anyone. As a student of the Word of God, you must know the emphasis the Scriptures lay on running your own race and working out your own salvation with fear and trembling (Hebrews 12:1-2). Romans 12:3-8 says grace has been given to each man as is fit for his life’s assignment. Believe it and live your life accordingly. The only conformation the LORD requires of you is being conformed to His will (Romans 12:1-2).
Do not compare to conform. Do not let people push you to conform to being whom God has not called you to be. The Apostle Paul’s reason for success is because he was who God had called him to be. “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me” (1 Corinthians 15:10). Be who God has called you to be, for without His grace, you, my friend, are nothing!
If you compare yourself with others in order to conform to who they are, rather than whom God created you to be, you will:
a. Always strive for unattainable goals. “Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.” --- Oscar Wilde
b. Never be fulfilled.
c. Enter into a dangerous trap of wanting to meet other people’s expectation for your life instead of God’s expectations.
d. Ceaselessly be distracted because you will be pursuing a moving goal versus running towards a predetermined and stationary finish line.
e. Always be project-minded rather than being process-minded. Ministry is done effectively through processes.
Be determined to do your own work well. Do not compare yourself with other pastors. They are not your gold standard, rather Christ ought to be that for you (Hebrews 12:2). There are two dangerous options that come as a result of comparing oneself to others.
Dangerous scenario 1:
When you compare yourself with other pastors, you will feel discouraged. You will always have the perception that you have failed and that there are others doing it much better than you are.
Dangerous scenario 2:
Alternatively, when you compare yourself with others, it will always be easy to find those whom you perceive yourself to be doing better than. This can easily result in pride.
A useful quote….
If my life is fruitless, it doesn’t matter who praises me, and if my life is fruitful, it doesn’t matter who criticizes me --- John Bunyan
- Help me, Father God, to be the authentic me that you desire – a worshipper in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). Make me a believer in true communion with You. One who will seek first Your Kingdom and Righteousness, spreading Your good news because You do not desire that any man should perish (2 Peter 3:8-9).
- Teach me to set your decrees ever before my eyes that I may live my days to bring you pleasure and delight continually. “Those who accept My commandments and obey them are the ones who love Me. The one who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I too will love them and show Myself to them” (John 14:21).
- Help me, LORD Jesus, not to grieve your Holy Spirit, but to learn to love and feed Your sheep that You’ve entrusted into my care. Teach me to be the shepherd that lays his life down for the sheep.
- In this wanton and perverse generation, help me to take my stand about me and my house serving the LORD wholeheartedly, no matter what all else is going on around us (Joshua 24:15).
- According to Ephesians 4:11-16, help me to equip the saints You have put in my care for the work of the ministry. May the community of believers in this parish be where the righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost will be perpetually experienced as the Kingdom of God (Romans 14:16-18).
- Show me how to raise Christians that are primarily dependent on You, LORD, as their source of life – physical, spiritual, financial, marital, and other aspects. May our congregation be filled with Christians who do better than the Bereans, living and breathing Your Word (Acts 17:24-29).
- Most importantly, when all is said and done, Father, may I here those cherished words of “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Master” (Matthew 25:21)!
Pastor Lanre Sobo is the parish pastor of RCCG Glory House in Colleyvile, TX. He has served in ministry for the last 20 years both as a leader and as a subordinate under various leaders. He is currently the RCCGNA Administrator.