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by Trever Carter

I hate to admit it, I truly do. But as much as I hate to admit it, it is safe to say that I am caught in the trap: the cyclic and toxic Comparison Trap that we have been talking about at iMPACT the past few weeks. For quite sometime, this trap has not only been a part of my life, but a controlling and integral force in it. Ever since middle school, I have always futilely compared myself to my peers, my brother, my friends. Why wasn’t I as smart or as funny or as popular or as athletic? And all it resulted in was a world of hurt, a broken heart and a distorted self image that said I wasn’t worth it.

This past Sunday at youth group we focused on a review preview–a look back at the weeks past and a look forward at the weeks ahead. As a new addition to iMPACT this year, I was extremely happy to see how well the review preview turned out. It was a welcome break from the traditional structure of a normal Sunday night, where we instead had extended worship and just a general slow down. The most important thing to me, however, was the open mic time where students got up to share about how the series had affected their lives in the recent weeks.

A friend of mine (whom I have known since we were really little–we just recently reconnected when she began to attend iMPACT) had the first go round at the microphone. In all honesty, she just took me aback. Having known her before she had come into faith, it was a breath of fresh air hearing her talk about how God had come in and changed her life–much like he had changed mine–and taken her insecurities and turned them around and set her free from her comparison trap. Two other freshmen also shared about how they were taught that God made them to be a certain way, and they didn’t have to change that to meet the expectations of those around them.

It got me thinking about my faith, about who I am, about what I am worth. And it came at a really necessary time in my life, where I am so concerned about my future, looking around at who is doing what and always wanting to be “er”… richer, smarter, better, more able to afford school or able to get more scholarships, more inclined to know what I’m supposed to do with my life. Or when I look at other peoples faith, and wish mine was more like that. It’s toxic, really and results in nothing good.

So I thank God for Him making me exactly who I am, and blessing me with the exact traits I was meant to have. I don’t need to compare myself to others; I only have to trust that I am worth everything to God.

TrevernewheadshotTrever Carter is a senior at Grayslake North High School. He enjoys running, playing lacrosse, and photography. He also likes to write, serve with the church, and spend time with his friends.

2 thoughts on “ICYouth: The Toxicity of Comparison {Trever}

  1. Trever, I really like how you call comparison what it is — it’s not just a silly thing or a bad idea; comparison is toxic! And it totally is against being the Body of Christ. Thank you for sharing!

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