The world is full of many talented and gifted people. And it’s easy to compare ourselves to them and conclude we don’t have anything meaningful to offer. But we’ve each been given a gift for doing certain things well. And we’ve not been called to offer the gifts of others, only to give what we ourselves have been given.
Perhaps we were not the smartest, most athletic, or popular student in school. And unsure of ourselves, we then tried to do what everyone else was doing to fit in. And a similar spirit of comparison and mimicking followed us into adulthood.
For instance, we believe success is having the job, house, clothes, and the like that everyone else has. And, likewise, we consider only the charismatic and obvious gifts as holding value. As such, we might downplay or outright dismiss our unique strengths because they don’t seem to fit in with what’s generally accepted. A lot of energy might also be spent trying to cultivate the gifts of others because we believe this is our only path to a life of meaning and worth.
While this is understandable, and certainly there’s a lot we can learn from others, we dishonor God and the gifts he has given us when we believe we don’t have enough to offer ourselves. False comparisons become the thief that steals, kills, and destroys the unique good God has called us to bring into the world.
To be sure, our gifts might look different than everyone else’s. And this might put us on many lonely paths. But, as wise and faithful stewards, we must learn to offer what we have, and not concern ourselves with what others have that we don’t.
In the end, celebrate and honor the many talented people in the world. But don’t let this distract you from cultivating and offering your own unique gifts. Focus your attention on what God has given you, and not on what he has given others.