2018 is quickly coming to a close. There seems to be a bittersweet feeling in the air around the holidays, and for me, it’s a season where I reflect on what has happened, where I am, and where I want to go. In the midst of a season that is meant to be full of celebration, I find myself consumed with a lie that somehow I am behind. I fight thoughts that sound something like, “she has had greater success in her career,” “why did God answer their prayer for that relationship and not mine,” or “they’re more financially secure than me…what are they doing differently.” If you’re anything like me then you know just how easy it is to think that God has not been in the details of our life. I have learned that comparison is the quickest killer of joy. BUT…there is something that we can do this season to unlock joy, promise, and hope for our future. That secret is celebrating each others wins!
Celebrating others is an unexpected concept in a world that blindly battles comparison at every turn. It’s a disease that is hidden in plain sight if you will. From social media platforms to publicized careers, we are seconds away from comparison and the idea that we have to compete to be successful. A belief has built up within this generation that there is not enough room for everyone to succeed. But, my question would be, when did success become a monetary amount, a position, or a level of influence? If we are not careful competition can steal our ability to champion others around us and steal our joy. You see, that’s what happens with bad habits, they begin to inhabit all the areas of our life.
I am the oldest of three who has always marched to the beat of my drum. My parents fanned this wild independence, tenacity, and self-assurance for as long as I can remember. Growing up, however, I found myself in rooms with girls who had popularity, good grades, and picture perfect relationships handed to them. Before finishing my freshman year of high school somehow, I felt behind. My clothes seemed too out of date to be cool, my hair seemed too short, my body seemed about ten pounds heavier than what was “beautiful.” I began to strive to not just to catch up but to come out ahead, which lead to unhealthy habits. Can I be transparent with you? I had lost my ability to joyfully celebrate who I was. And with that came a disruptive, brutal, and all-consuming eating disorder. The control that it gave me partnered with the results that I saw was like some twisted gift. For a second that left as quickly as it came, I believed that I had made it. When In reality it left me empty, resentful, unhealthy, and just shy of satisfied. This comparison had created a self-critical spirit in my heart that moved me into the worst self-sabotage. I had pushed everyone around me away because my heart told me that they were the reason I felt less-than. They were the enemy. About eight years later, I had a group of incredible women come into my life which began showing me how to get back my joy through celebrating one another. They reminded my heart the word of God over my life. They told me who the real enemy was and where my strength could be found.
You see God is so precise with us on how we were made to do this life! Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 in the New Living Translation says, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble”. We cannot all be alike because we were created to lean on each other! I’m not great at everything. I struggle more than I like to admit. I need what you have to be successful and fulfilled! I need your strength when I fall short! When we walk side by side choosing to say goodbye to comparison and celebrate one another, there is power. It’s time to take back joy and allow hope to seep back into our hearts. We were hand knit with a purpose that is unique. Choose to see things through the lens of Christ instead of comparison. Believe that your stubborn strength, your smile, your role as a friend, your role as a mother, your career, and your creativity is valuable. You can’t celebrate or come alongside others until you can see yourself clearly. Collaboration over comparison is how we win! When we lay down comparison, we can regain the hope that we can accomplish anything we set our mind to. When we stop allowing comparison to cut off any chance of collaboration we can dream bigger and bolder. Here it is..together we get to choose to celebrate the wins (yours, mine, and the girl next doors) and that’s worth remembering.
Hey ladies! My name is Megan Beard. I am a 24 year old currently residing in the beautifully creative city of Nashville TN. I am a coffee addict with a sharp sense of humor. However, I want each of you to know that my heart is so passionate about shifting the perspective of women to see their personal potential and worth. Since stepping into full time ministry I have gotten to do this in so many different arenas. However, I am so excited to be coming along side Creative Souls Tribe, and I am looking forward to sharing more of my heart with all of you! Feel free to follow me and share your stories with me on Instagram @mbeard35 or at unwaveringblog.com