Over the past four years, my life has been radically transformed! As I look back, I am truly amazed at God’s goodness. It’s hard to believe how far He has brought me as I have grown in my giftings, learned to trust Him more, and developed a self-confidence founded in his love for me.

I wasn’t always like this, though. Throughout my life, I’ve struggled with self-doubt, self-shaming, self-comparison, and fear to name a few. My self-confidence has always been tied to my talents and abilities, in which I took much pride; however when anybody was better than me at something, all confidence would immediately wither and I’d fall into comparing myself to them. In this day and age, it’s especially difficult to not compare ourselves with the constant images and ideals being beat into our minds by the media & culture, along with self-comparison’s biggest incubator: social media.

Why can’t I have hair like her? Why don’t I look as good as her? Why aren’t my lips fuller? Why aren’t my eyes bluer? Why isn’t my body built a different way? Why can’t I sing like her? Why can’t I have her voice? Why can’t I be the best or why can’t I be better? In my past, all of these thoughts were ammunition the enemy shot into my mind; ammunition that I dwelled on.

The funny thing is that my desires would always change as the pictures before me changed. That’s how you know comparison is a useless trap! You’re never satisfied. One day I’d see a pretty picture of a girl with dark hair and tan skin, and I’d wish to look like that. The next day I’d see a brunette girl with green eyes and I’d wish to look like that. The same thing would happen with my music. I’d hear one girl’s voice and think, wow, if I could just sing that way… The next day I’d hear a different song and wish I could sound like that singer. The list goes on, and the self-comparisons were endless!

But there is good news! Throughout the past two years, God has been redefining the standards I set for myself and revealing His love to me. I have always heard God loves me, but you know how it goes: it gets cliché and meaningless after being raised in church and hearing it all the time. However, through seeking him, building uplifting Christ-centered friendships, and having Godly role models who spoke into my life, I received a new revelation of God’s love for me. There is literally nothing we can do to separate ourselves from His love. Did you read that!? It blows my mind every time.

Romans 8:38-39 (NLT) says, “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death, nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.”

When you get a hold on how much he adores (loves) you, you realize he made you EXACTLY how he wanted you to be. The freckles you hate? He sprinkled them across your cheeks before you were even born. The voice you have? He designed it uniquely, like NO ONE ELSE’S. He planned out every aspect of your being before time began, and he gave you different looks and talents from everyone else because that’s exactly how he wanted you! YOU are the best version of you. God said so!

When you realize all of this, and firmly set your identity in Christ & Christ only, comparisons become almost laughable. Now, when those thoughts try to come at me, they literally seem stupid! Why would I wish to change how God made me, when he knows I’m the best me exactly how I am now? Why would I compare myself to someone else’s looks or talents when God formed mine how He knew would be perfect for my destiny? It really is crazy!

Girls, it’s time to stop wishing to be different. It’s time to stop comparing ourselves. It’s time to stop letting jealousy ruin relationships and cause insecurity. God can’t use us or let us step into our destiny when we are shaken by such petty things!

I encourage and challenge you – find your security in God and what he says about you, nothing else. Remember that He made you the most perfect version of yourself there ever could be. God doesn’t make mistakes!

You are LOVED!

 Cheyenne Rose Arnspiger, 18, is a journalist, musician, songwriter, fashion-enthusiast, and crazy cat lady. Due to a high-pressure background of performing and modeling, self-comparison, fear, and insecurity were all a part of her life before she found her identity in God. Now, she is passionate about inspiring other girls to be confident in Christ through the songs, blogs, and stories she writes.