October 17, 2023

Blessed and Free From Comparison

Written by Shana Schutte

Fix your eyes ahead.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – October 17, 2023

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

In Philippians 3:14, Paul wrote, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

When I think about this scripture, I envision a man with his eyes firmly fixed ahead. He’s not looking around to see what others are doing in their race. He is simply concerned about his own journey. To do otherwise, to gaze at other runners—not only to see how they are running, but to consider what they are receiving from the Lord and how they are being blessed—is unproductive and can lead to grumbling, a lack of gratitude, and feeling overlooked and ignored by God.

When we begin to compare our blessings, lives, and trials to our brothers and sisters, we are ignoring a simple truth: for the Lord to give to us as He has given to others—in the same manner and in the same timing as He has given to others—would be unfair. Because He has uniquely created each of us, and given us each special assignments, His answers for our prayers and requests must be uniquely answered as well. He knows what each of us need and when we need it. And (hallelujah!) His answers are always rooted in His mercy and love.

In Mark 10 in two separate instances, people asked Jesus for a blessing. In the first instance, James and John asked Christ “When you sit on your glorious throne, we want to sit in places of honor next to you, one on your right and the other on your left” (Mark 10:37).

Jesus denied their request.

In the second instance, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting on the side of the road and asked Jesus to give him sight (Mark 10:51).

Jesus said yes. Instantly the man could see, and he followed Jesus down the road.

These two stories are a great reminder, that sometimes the Lord will say yes to our requests, and sometimes He will say no. But whatever His response, all His responses are done in love, and all are assigned especially for us. He never answers haphazardly or without care. Remember, as you experience God’s yesses and His nos, that you have been uniquely created with unique assignments, therefore, His responses for you must be unique too.

Keep your gaze firmly fixed ahead. Do not look about comparing yourself to others, wondering why God has favored them more. That is a lie from the devil. You are also highly favored in a very unique way. Don’t forget it. 

“A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot” (Proverbs 14:30).


Lord, thank you that your involvement in my life is very personal. I am grateful that you do not give me exactly what others have or answer my prayers in the same way that you answer theirs. You are doing what is best for me because you love me. Amen.


Look back at your journey. Have there been some prayers Jesus did not answer that you are now glad He denied?

Related Reading

Galatians 6:4-5; Philippians 2:3; Psalm 37:5

Worship Resource

Chris Tomlin: Sovereign


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