Comparison Is The Thief Of Joy, Psalm 139:14

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Do you see it?  Would you recognize it if you did?  Has the world dimmed your vision so that you are literally unable to see the fingerprints of God on your very being? Maybe the most important question is this:

Do you believe this beautiful lyric in a very old song by Steven Curtis Chapman?

“You are a masterpiece that all of creation quietly applauds, you are covered with the fingerprints of God.”

Steven Curtis Chapman

“Fingerprints Of God” 

I will be the first to answer this question.  Most of the time, the answer to this question is a resounding, almost deafening NO! But, I learned this verse just like many of you did, or if not let me teach it to you.

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14

This particular Psalm is filled with promises and adorations for the creations of God. But, so many times we forget it or don’t believe it.  It is filled with all kinds of truth, but this verse is the crux of a message that we all need to hear, and more importantly believe.

I memorized it and thought I understood it, even though words like “fearfully” normally conjure a negative connotation in my mind, and “wonderfully” or any version of that word is not a word that I would use to describe myself.  Many of my close friends, if they were being honest, would tell you the same.  It is a universal struggle.  Knowing full well that His creation is wonderful is not a true statement for most of us.

The Hebrew meaning for “fearfully” left me literally blankly staring into the text. The root of this word in this verse means “reverently” and the Hebrew word for “wonderfully” means, “set apart” or “unique”.

Did you know that the human body was created with 10 anatomical systems, 206 bones, a brain that is still not fully understood and something as simple as lifting your finger requires at least 12 complicated steps of muscle contraction? Now, I fully realize that not every human body on this planet are born just as the Master Artist intended, but we have to admit the human body is pretty spectacular and it rivals even the most beautiful pieces of art.

Why don’t we see that when we look in the mirror?  What don’t we treat our bodies like they are the masterpieces that they are?

Think of the creation of your being like this.  God knew you before you were born; even before you were conceived.  He didn’t mass- produce you, he reverently created you and He created you unlike another soul on the planet!  So many times we take our queues from other people on how we should look, often comparing ourselves to other people when we KNOW that He created us UNLIKE ANYONE ELSE!  Of course we aren’t going to look like anybody except the unique, wonderful being He made us to be!  I read a quote recently that summed this up perfectly “Comparison is the thief of joy”. This is so true!  We shouldn’t compare ourselves to other people because there literally is NO ONE LIKE YOU!

But, we live in the real world and we are going to inevitably compare ourselves to other people, we are going to get seek value from a number on a scale, perhaps another number that measures our intelligence and all of us are watching the years etched in the crevices of what used to be smooth skin.  And we effectively tell the Author of the universe that he epically failed during that time of reverence when He made us unlike any of the billions of other creations He calls His own.  And worse than all of that, we aren’t helpful to each other with our silent judgments and indictments.  We certainly can do better about reminding each other of the beautiful creations that are our minds, bodies and souls.

Can you imagine if you could spend some time with Picasso?  Would you sit down with him and tell him of all the defects of your favorite piece of his artwork?  Would you compare his artwork to Michelangelo?  Or would you spend your time telling him how amazing his work is and how it has stood the test of time?  Would you praise him for his talents?

Oftentimes when this verse is addressed we forget the first part of it:

“I will praise You…”

Will you? Will I?  Will I look in a mirror and praise His creation? Will I ignore a number on the scale, will I ignore the number on an IQ chart?  Will I stop spending copious hours on social media wishing I had the body, the mind or the life of another person?  Will I stand up, lift my hands and praise Him for the unique person that He made me?  Will I finally understand that His unfailing love for me means that He loves the wonderfully created human being that HE made me to me, NOT the person I think I should be, or the person that I think I should look like?

Will I? Will you?

I am going to leave this here for you to think about all week.

Because we aren’t done talking about how awesome you are.

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