Christmas is a really important season for many businesses both large and small. Sales from this time of the year can make or break the entire year. Then, on top of that, good ol’ social media adds to the pressure because it’s the way many businesses advertise, promote, and sell their products. Our inboxes and feeds are filled with it — especially in this season. So I’m not surprised it all sets my comparison into overdrive when it comes to my work as an artist.
I know I shouldn’t be comparing myself to others. I know better, and I really don’t want to. But if only it were that easy! Unfortunately, I still do because I’m human.
I see other amazing artists, talented creatives, and so many incredible business owners doing well — or at least what I perceive as them doing well — and at times, I can’t help but feel less than. Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually really happy for them. I want them to do well, and I love being able to cheer them on with excitement from the sidelines. But that doesn’t stop my mind from comparing, from thinking they’re somehow doing everything better than me — better art, better ads, better marketing, better social media, better business.
I see them as having and doing more, and I can feel inadequate and somewhat capable. I worry I’m not doing enough or not working hard enough or not producing enough fruit. I feel like I’m lacking in some way — and well, I feel just real ordinary. Too ordinary.
Then, God, in His amazing ways, reminds me about ordinary. He reminds me of the most beautiful example of what ordinary can do. Mary, an ordinary girl, was asked to do the most extraordinary thing — to become the very mother of God. With a heart for Him and with one faith-filled yes, this ordinary girl changed the entire world.
We may feel ordinary. We may see our days and our lives as too mundane. We may feel that God cannot produce fruit through the little we feel like we have to offer. But God doesn’t see us that way. He doesn’t see us as lacking. He already sees us extraordinary. He sees us as a gift. He made us just as we are and uses everything we have to offer for His glory. He chose us to do His great work in both big and small ways, and it’s all important to Him.
God can take our faith-filled yes and multiply it in unimaginable ways.
I know deep down inside that I’m not defined by numbers and sales. I know I’m not defined by social media likes and followers. I have a purpose, and God has equipped me for it. So I continue to give my all to the One who chose me to do the work I do. I give my yes to Him — my heart-filled, faithful yes — again and again.
This Christmas season, may we follow the example of the ordinary girl who wanted what God wanted for her — a heart for Him. May we remember He will use our passion, our faithfulness, and our yeses to do extraordinary things and produce the most beautiful of fruit. And may we continue to say yes again and again!
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
John 15:5, 7-8 (NIV)