March 6, 2012

on comparisons & marriage.

it's time for week two of the relationship series. and this week, writing on the topic of comparisons. and, well, it's pretty timely today.

newlyweds. 2009.
sitting in the hospital room next to my husband while i write this, exhausted, i give you fair warning. this might not make sense. but i hope the core of it still rings clear. because, i've learned a lot.

i've been a comparer for as long as i can remember.

i've struggled to draw parallels. sought to find a shred of similarity to those around me. to fit in. to be accepted. to feel normal. to connect. instead i've found longing & discontent. jealousy. even self-righteousness.

thankfully i've stopped drawing comparisons in many areas of my life. but not all. definitely not all.

despite all the wisdom i've acquired in my longing to relate to others' happiness, i still compare my marriage to others. my marriage that is the biggest blessing of my life. my marriage to the man that i couldn't live without & who's eyes i still get lost in when he looks at me. this glorious covenant that i am so in awe of, & in awe of the fact that i am able to be a part of it.

i look at others and think, if only. if only my husband was well. if only we had resources to get away from it all & focus on each other. if only we had money enough to buy a house of our own. if only we were debt-free. if only we had the energy to serve our church & community, the way our hearts long to. if only we had a second child, and hadn't lost ours.

if only, then i would have more joy.

it's funny what being in a hard season will do to you. suddenly others lives seem so serene. so together. so full of peace. it's like they've all got it together. all of them, except for you.

well my friends, they don't.

something that i have learned on this road that we've been traveling, is that we all have hardships. some are more physical, more tangible than others. but just because a struggle is internal doesn't mean it bears less weight on the soul of the oppressed. each of us are given what we can handle.

each of us are different. each has a struggle that is their own. and each of us has a purpose in the life that we have been given. and no matter where you find yourself. it's yours to see the grace that is peppered throughout it. the grace that has mingled with each & every tear. the grace that gives you the hope of what tomorrow will bring, of who you will be when you have weathered the storm.

this life is yours. and it's a glorious journey. so immerse yourself if what you've been given and don't compare yourself. because you are unique.

and your story is beautiful.



  1. i really enjoyed this! such good reminders!

  2. this is so beautiful, ashley. i can tell you're a writer because your heart is all i see when i read your words. i didn't know about your baby, and i am thankful you shared that on here. you are so sweet and good. and this post is so true. our stories are our own, the good and the bad and everything in between. you and nick are such an inspiration. xoxo

  3. This is ABsolutely beautiful hon. I feel like I wrote so many parts of this. I have to send you into the direction of my Endure section of my blog and this post:
    after you read them, if you have time of course, you will see why.

    You have absolute wisdom where this is concerned, and I praise God for it because going through any physical illness or mental illness that trips up our lives and darkness enters, can make us lose our faith. Satan does all he can to KILL STEAL AND DESTROY us, but we can fight back with faith like yours! We can fight back by putting on our armor of God the way you have here. No body's got it all together, no one, and even if they aren't going through these times like you are, well it might be easier for them in life BUT look at the character of God you are building!!! You are being refined and finding beauty in even the hardest, ugliest of times, and that is invaluable, and gosh, just thank you for sharing your heart with us and for linking up with us today!!!

  4. Oh girl, this is fantastic! You put this into words so beautifully. I've had so many of the same thoughts. I struggle with comparisons a lot, but God has brought me so far. Sometimes it just seems like the grass is always greener, but God has us in a particular season/situation for a reason!

    I love how you said that when we're in a difficult season, it appears that everyone else has it all together. that is SO true! It always does seem that way, but we're all fighting some sort of battle.

    Thanks for your beautiful post!


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