The Conundrum of Comparison

Psalm 73:25-26

Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

This excerpt from Psalm 73 is often quoted, but have you read the entire Psalm to see its context.  It has a great message regarding our attitudes towards those who do seem to prosper in this world … yet do not know God nor have a faithful relationship with him.  Too often, we compare our financial situations with others who seem to “prosper” more than ourselves. In doing so, we walk a dangerous line and fail to see the greater blessing of trusting God and serving Him with our lives. When Asaph, the Psalmist, went into the sanctuary of God, he discerned the end of the unrighteous and took hope in the resurrection to come for the righteous.  He concluded in his supplication before God:

Psalm 73:23-28 (ESV)

23 Nevertheless, I am continually with you; you hold my right hand.  24 You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory. 25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. 26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength (the rock) of my heart and my portion forever. 27 For behold, those who are far from you shall perish; you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you. 28 But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.

It is probably best not to make comparisons with others because to do so often provokes envy and misguides our hearts. We can be enticed to covet things we do not have … not considering what we do have in Christ Jesus is far better than any riches this world might have to offer. As Paul wrote:

1 Timothy 6:6-12 (NIV)

Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 11 But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

So Now You Know….

Have a Blessed Day!