Solutions June 2018 - Page 44

Major Mistakes the Church is Making with Single COMPARISON Parents & CALLING by JON TYSON I have struggled deeply with comparison my whole life, and I can pinpoint the moment its idolatrous shadow was cast over my heart. When I was in elementary school, I enrolled in a local track-and-field club. Much to the surprise of everyone around me, I ended up excelling as an athlete and breaking all kinds of state records. I was a fierce and dominant competitor, and I would come home to my parents with a chestful of blue first-place ribbons. I loved the feeling I got from lining up for a race and overhearing my peers say things like “I don’t even want to race. I know Jon is going to win.” I would run around that track like a junior Olympian god, head held high, unrivaled. I didn’t struggle with comparison then because, in my mind, I had no equals. 44 • Solutions Then one morning a new kid came and watched me race. I can still see him there, standing next to his dad and looking straight into my eyes. I overheard one of my friends say, “What is he doing here? He’s the fastest kid I have ever seen.” At that, a new kind of emotion swept over me, one I could not articulate. It was a defense-based anxiety, and I didn’t like it. I won that race, but something had awoken within me. Comparison. The next week, to my surprise, that “fastest kid ever” joined our club, and the security of my world was invaded. As we walked up to the starting line for the first race of the day, everyone paused to watch. The gun went off, and I began to pump my small arms and legs like mighty pistons. I broke away and for the briefest of moments felt comparison