A couple of weeks ago I posted an article on the characteristics of a church planter. I confessed that when I look at myself I don't see that I have what it takes. I feel called, but not qualified. I especially feel inadequate when looking at lists like this and at some of the other people planting churches-they are just awesome.
But the reality is that all pale in comparison to others. We never measure up in our own eyes. We feel the need to impress others by speaking differently or promoting certain aspects of our background to make ourselves look more impressive. We do this because people use lists and our achievements to classify us; to assign us worth.
Maybe this is why pastors stretch the truth?
The secret is not to compare ourselves. We are called to be what God has made us. Yes, we are called to better ourselves and to stretch ourselves to new heights, but not in comparison to someone else. I am not made like anyone else in the world. I am the only one who is able to be "ME."
And you are the only "YOU" there is. We don't all have the same capabilities. We aren't made the same. You have to figure out what it is you enjoy, that you are good at, and that makes you passionate enough to pursue it with all you have. Some people will never reach their dreams because they don't have the drive, or because they don't have the talent for the area they have chosen (For example: watch any audition from American Idol). The secret is to find where all three of these things overlap: passion, ability, and drive.
But here is something you may not want to hear: No matter how good you are, there is always someone better. I hate that notion, but it reminds us of the truth that we have to be content with who we are and what we can accomplish without comparing ourselves to others. Happiness never comes as a result of comparing ourselves to someone else; even when we think we are better than the person to whom we are comparing ourselves.
There is a great article over at the Recovering Leader.
Addendum: Here is an article by Craig Groeschel.