In today’s society, comparison is a natural occurrence that has many people comparing their lifestyles, careers, marriages, and even social network sites. In reality, comparison is unhealthy for the health of our lives and relationships. Because it is based on partial truths, it creates the trap of illusion and robs marriages of their joy (John 10:10).
Imagine this – you get into a fight with your spouse that is filled with emotion. How easy is it to accept the lie of the enemy that everyone’s marriage is perfect but yours? The comparison trap will cause you to believe that you are not measuring up because it magnifies the false reality of success. This trap can also surface as thoughts of “they have a nicer house or car than us”, “why can’t my spouse have a job like hers?” or “they travel and have much more fun than us.” The list goes on – but the fact remains that the comparison trap kills growth, creating insecurity and destruction in marriages.
Here are 3 ways to avoid the comparison trap in marriage:
- Embrace Truth. Face it – no marriage is perfect! Comparing your success or spouse to others, masquerades as false reality, which is not what God intended for marriage. After all, marriage is to display His glory as a sacred union of two people that love and cherish one another, without comparison. To avoid the comparison trap, it is important to embrace the truth that our identity is found in Christ (Galatians 2). In Him, we find peace, worth, value, and security for a healthy marriage.
- Love Your Lane. In reality, if you swerve on a highway into other lanes, you can cause an accident. The same is true in marriage – it is totally ok that your marriage is not like others that you encounter. Staying in your marriage lane stops the comparison trap from stealing meaningful love moments in your own union. Enjoying the good things in your marriage with laughter, expressing gratitude, and celebrating your spouse’s uniqueness and strengths will change your perspective for contentment and better moments to come (Philippians 4:8-9).
- Speak Life. Being selective with your words kills the comparison trap. Since there is creative power in our words, we either speak words that produce life and blessings or “cracked” foundations in our marriages (Proverbs 18:21; Hebrews 11:3). Remember, every time you compare your marriage to others or entertain negative thinking, you release words that allow the enemy to alter God’s framework of love for your marriage.
Do any of these hit close to home in your marriage? What other areas can you work on to kill the comparison trap and find contentment for a healthier marriage?