As I begin to dig through the files in my office, I find myself feeling a bit overwhelmed. I worry that I will not have the same level of energy as the person who held this position before me. She did a lot with the youth – trips, fundraisers, lock-ins, etc. And I’m only getting started. Why does this worry me so much? I play stupid comparison games all the time. Weird thing is, I’ve rarely fallen into the physical appearance trap of comparison. Not that I feel like I’m drop-dead gorgeous or that I’m fully happy with my weight (nice thing about being pregnant is I don’t worry about that one right now!) But I don’t usually worry about those things in comparison to someone else. Mostly it’s just wishing that I didn’t have the zit on my lip or that I was healthier.
But when it comes to being outgoing, I constantly compare myself to others. I worry that I don’t talk enough in social situations, or that I’m not engaging enough to really draw out the youth. I forget that not everyone is supposed to be that way. But it’s hard for me. My natural habitat is to bury my nose in a book or write about my thoughts. But that doesn’t mean I belong there all the time! I’ve been doing pretty well moving out of my comfort zone in the last few years. Teaching this summer was a big one for me, because I spent five days a week in a classroom with elementary children. And while it reconfirmed for me the decision I made in college to NOT be a schoolteacher, it also helped me to realize that I CAN work with kids and that it’s not as scary as I thought.
I’m going to be reminding myself a lot in the coming weeks that while I might feel inferior based on the files in my office, I was brought in to do a different job. My job isn’t just youth, it also involves Sunday school. And I’m part-time, so I can’t do it all. I am not going to fall into the trap of measuring myself against the past. I will challenge myself to keep stepping out in faith and doing the work that God has prepared for me to do each day.