Be Better Than Yourself

17 Jan

“Don’t bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.”  ~ William Faulkner

Life is always filled with competition.  We either pit ourselves against others or are pitted against others by circumstances beyond our control.  Generally, there is a clear winner and a clear loser.  That often causes animosity as no one likes to be the loser.

As I said, sometimes the contest is beyond our control.  Mostly, however, we are the ones who initiate the competition.  We want to be able to prove ourselves.  We want to be called the best.  In order to do that, we often adopt the “kill ’em” mentality.  We cannot merely win.  We have to obliterate our competition so that they do not come back for a rematch.

All that time, though, there is one very important opponent that we fail to engage:  our very self.  That’s right.  We should not worry about besting those around us.  We should be spending all of our energy besting ourselves.

We might be pretty good in our spiritual lives.  That doesn’t mean we cannot be better.  We might be pretty good servants.  We can always serve others with a greater intensity.  We might be pretty good Christians.  Come to think of it, Jesus doesn’t want pretty good Christians, He wants absolutely wonderful followers.

There is always room for improvement.  The sooner we acknowledge that, the sooner we will begin to do something about it.

FAITH ACTION:  Assess your weaknesses and make a plan to become better in the areas in which you are lacking.