On the outside, I smiled; but inside, I was taking an inventory of my outfit. Ugh! My clothes definitely didn’t measure up. What’s more embarrassing is that to boost my mood, my thinking went negative, putting others down.
As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Colossians 3:12 (NIV)
Admitting to such an ugly reaction isn’t easy. When I’m honest, I can see that comparisons control me. I’m in a battle to follow God’s way; but at the same time, I want to make a great impression. This struggle usually sends me in the wrong direction and consumes more of my energy than I realize.
When I told a friend about my struggle, she said that when she is drawn toward negative thinking, she imagines the temptation as an outdated ragged coat that somebody is trying to make her wear. Then she mentally states, That’s just not me! and walks away. Visualizing ugly attitudes as an outfit I don’t want to wear and saying, “That’s just not me,” has given me a tool to refuse the wrong way. I don’t always remember in the moment to try this practice; but when I do, I know I am choosing thoughts that honor God and others.
TRY IT: Take off the coat of judgment and envy. Put on the clothes of compassion and kindness.