I’m a huge fan of the daily devotional — that quick in-and-out, food for thought, regular infusion of wisdom to get the day started right.
Not long ago, I came across a devotional booklet I’ve had since college. It was tucked away in a corner of a box that had been in storage. The entry for today compelled itself out of the book and onto this blog. It’s taken from “Days of Healing, Days of Joy,” December 9:
Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed. — Booker T. Washington
Competition can be a killer. Allowing our value or worth to be measured against the achievements of another leads to confusion and a misunderstanding of the truth.
We are not all the same. We have not all started at the same place. The effort and heroism it has taken to reach a certain level of success, on whatever field it may be played, vary as greatly as the players in this game of life.
Our task is to learn to stay within ourselves. We must learn to measure our grandness, not by another’s yardstick or in relationship to another, but to know ourselves well enough to acknowledge the effort and desire we have put forth to get where we are — wherever that may be.
Today, I will not worry about who’s ahead or who’s behind. I will run my own race.
I love this, especially in light of the competitive world in which we live. If more of us allowed this way of thinking to guide our decisions, many problems would be solved or never materialize in the first place. It’s a good thing to remember as we help our children make their way through life, and it’s a good thing to remember as we continue to improve on ourselves.