Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Comparing Yourself With Others by Laura V. Hilton

Laura V. Hilton
I recently read an email from someone else entitled “10 Good Things That Happen When You Compare Yourself to Someone Else”
1.

Short list, right? And yet that is something that I’m struggling with right now.

Not naming names, but one author got a spot I wanted in a book collection. She is an established author with over forty books published. I felt bad for me, envious of her, especially when she gets contracts handed to her without seeming to try. “I was approached to write…”

And then there is an Indie author, who tried for years to land an agent or editor and get a contract. She wisely decided to go it alone, outsold many traditionally published authors and landed a movie contract. Wow.

Envy. Green-eyed monster alert. I’m definitely comparing myself to others here. And falling fall short. Why am I even trying? I’m not good enough! (insert fake crying sounds)

Not only that but my creativity level has flat-lined.

But God didn’t call me based on my merits. He saw a broken individual who promised her life to Him to serve as He wills. Not as I will. As He wills. And even though I’m not getting movie contracts (which I really don’t want anyway) or getting contracts handed to me without much effort, I am serving Him the way He called me.

Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: Philippians 1:15

I don’t want to be the one writing and telling of God’s mercy and grace with envy in my heart. I want to do it with gladness. With joy that He called me.

Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Psalm 100:2

This is a lesson I’m learning. Not to compare myself with others. To be the writer God called me to be. To be faithful with what He’s given me, and not hiding the talents He blessed me with somewhere they’d be “safe.” To put the words on the computer screen page and write on, trusting He will come through. To find joy.

Are you following the Lord and using the talents He gave you to serve Him? Or are you hiding your gifts because you aren’t as good as someone else?

Lord, help me not to compare myself with others. Help me to follow You without question, without looking at what others are doing, and serve You the way You want me to. Amen
About the Author
Award winning author, Laura Hilton, her husband, Steve, and three of their children make their home in Arkansas. She is a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom and home-schools. Laura is also a breast cancer survivor. Laura also has two adult children.

Her publishing credits include three books in the Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House: Patchwork Dreams, A Harvest of Hearts (winner of the 2012 Clash of the Titles Award in two categories), and Promised to Another. The Amish of Webster County series, Healing Love (finalist for the 2013 Christian Retail Awards). Surrendered Love and Awakened Love followed by her first Christmas novel, A White Christmas in Webster County, as well as a three book Amish series with Whitaker House, The Amish of Jamesport series, The Snow Globe, The Postcard in April 2015, and The Bird House in September 2015. Other credits include Swept Away from Abingdon Press. Laura is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and a professional book reviewer.

Connect with Laura
http://www.amazon.com/Laura-V.-Hilton/e/B004IRSM5Q
visit her blogs: http://lighthouse-academy.blogspot.com/ &http://lauravhilton.blogspot.com/
Twitter: @Laura_V_Hilton
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Laura-V-Hilton/161478847242512
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/vernetlh/

The Postcard (from Promised to Another)


David Lapp survived a “code blue” when he was in a buggy/semi truck accident in Seymour, Missouri. Now after extensive therapy he has lingering mobility problems and is still struggling to find his place in the world. Lured away from Webster County by thoughts of closed buggies and a postcard friendship he’s developed with an Amish girl in Jamesport, he moves north, hoping for a fresh start. He finds work in the area tying flies and basket weaving, selling his products in the Amish markets in the Jamesport area.

Rachel Miller dreams of travel, but feels tied to her Amish life. She is being courted by Obadiah Graber, but wonders if there’s more to life. When she sees David’s name mentioned in The Budget, she strikes up a pen pal friendship with David while he’s in the hospital and in therapy, consoling him when he and his girlfriend part ways. She never dreams that David will come north and move into her community. David is still fearful in the buggy, especially in high traffic areas. Feeling he’s called by God to preach, David spends hours in the Bible, but the Amish discourage him, believing their ministers should be drawn by lot. Will David follow his call, even if it takes him out of the Amish church? Will Rachel realize her dream to travel?


10 comments:

  1. On my oh-so-long writing journey, I wasted a lot of time on envy. I was the last of my 4 crit partners to get published, and for years was the bridesmaid at committees. But God has His time and His place for each of us. And that should be our only timeline, and as you said, comparison. Great post, Laura!

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    1. Thanks, Ane! And I am continuing to learn this. Not only that, but we need to be true to ourselves and our writing and not try to fit into a box we aren't made for.

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  2. So true. I saw a quote once something along the lines of "The only person you should compare yourself to is the person you were yesterday" ... It's easy to get caught up in bitterness and envy, but on my best days I try to look at others and LEARN FROM them. Is another author experiencing raving success? What can I learn from her path to the top? Did someone I look up to stumble and fall? How can I use her experience to avoid making the same mistakes? Rather than judging (for better or worse) others, I try (not always successfully!) to watch and learn, and look for actionable lessons that I can apply to my own writing career (or spiritual journey, etc).

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    1. Yes! I read all of my favorite authors's book and try to study them, especially in the parts that make me sit up and take interest. What did they do there to hook me? And how can I use it in my writing.

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  3. Laura, what a wonderful, heart-felt, meaningful post. So glad to know I'm not alone. Your Amish books sound amazing. You are definitely a success in my book! God bless you, and thanks, thanks, thanks.

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    1. You are definitely not alone. And thank you for your kind words.

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  4. Laura, what wonderful, encouraging words these are that you've shared with us. Thank you! I especially appreciated the part about God not calling each of us based upon our merits.

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    1. I'm so thankful He doesn't require us to be "someone." He just wants us to serve Him and love Him with all our hearts. He equips the willing.

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  5. Thanks so much for your transparency, Laura. I think we all - or at least most of us - struggle with envy at one time or another. Like Tanya said, you're not alone! It's important that we keep our focus on where it needs to be - and at the same time, be supportive of each other along the way when we go through these kinds of struggles.

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    1. Yes. I know I'm not alone. I didn't want to sound "whiny" but I wanted to encourage others with a very real struggle.

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