A few days ago, I decided to go for a run outdoors after having been training indoors for some weeks. I started out with a power walk for about 4minutes. While I was doing this, a middle aged woman passed by jogging, but her steps were quite slow paced. I smiled to myself thinking, ” that must be what they call baby steps”. After I finished stretching and was about to start my run, I looked ahead and saw this woman had not made much progress. So I decided to show her how outdoor running is done (what was I thinking?)
I started running a race that was not required of me and very unnecessary.
By the time I was behind her I had gathered momentum and sped off past her, smiling inside thinking, “show her what you’re made of”. I ran on this show-off-pace for 5minutes and before I could show myself anything I was out of breath, tired and had to stop. This happened twice. I looked behind to see how far behind this lady was and thought “I didn’t do so badly”. Then she turned off the road at the next junction. Alas! She was at her destination……… I was a bit deflated but decided to go for the run I came out for.
I ran 1mile stopping twice in between. Did I mention this was my regular running route and I’ve done so for 1year. From beginning to end of my run I usually don’t stop but I did at this particular time; within 1mile stopping 2TIMES!!!
On my way back home I thought about my actions and asked myself why I did what I did? Why did I behave this way when I clearly had no clue who the lady was and wasn’t competing for any medal or cup?
The lessons I learnt were;
- We are not in any competition whatsoever with each other, unless you’re an athlete and you’re competing in the Olympics.
- We all have different destinations in life. Some detour to the left while some to the right and others neither go left nor right but keep straight ahead.
- We are equipped with different capabilities. Some people have the strength for a marathon. Some can only do short distances. Some are competitive while others do what they do for fun and relaxation
We need to learn to run our own race and stay in our lanes. God has made us all perfect having our own uniqueness. He has loaded every individual with great potential and abilities. There is absolutely no point trying to copy one another, trying to outshine the other or bringing ourselves down. We are all stars in the sky and will shine no matter what we do. “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.” We are one of a kind, an original copy created for great works.
If my run has taught me anything, it’s that the comparison trap is an easy one to fall into and once you’re at the bottom it takes a lot more effort to climb out. Not that I didn’t know this before but I’m terrible at forgetting things. I am my own competition, I should strive to be better than who I was yesterday, anyone else is irrelevant.
In the journey of life, we will cross paths with different people but that is not an indication that we have the same destinations. Our stories may sound similar, but they will never be the same.
“We’re not, understand, putting ourselves in a league with those who boast that they’re our superiors. We wouldn’t dare do that. But in all this comparing and grading and competing, they quite miss the point. We aren’t making outrageous claims here. We’re sticking to the limits of what God has set for us. But there can be no question that those limits reach to and include you. We’re not moving into someone else’s “territory.” We were already there with you, weren’t we? We were the first ones to get there with the Message of Christ, right? So how can there be any question of overstepping our bounds by writing or visiting you?
We’re not barging in on the rightful work of others, interfering with their ministries, demanding a place in the sun with them. What we’re hoping for is that as your lives grow in faith, you’ll play a part within our expanding work. And we’ll all still be within the limits God sets as we proclaim the Message in countries beyond Corinth. But we have no intention of moving in on what others have done and taking credit for it. “If you want to claim credit, claim it for God.” What you say about yourself means nothing in God’s work. It’s what God says about you that makes the difference.” 2Corinthians 10:12-18MSG