Perfectionism

IMG_0835.JPG.jpegWhile driving on my way to work, I had a few thoughts. Usually, I dread the 15 minute car ride, however, I was at peace because it was raining. I don’t know what it is, but there is such a calm feeling I have when it’s raining. I wondered, why do people absolute dread rainy days? What about them are so bad? Rain can ruin outdoor plans, make your well put together outfit wet and ruined, it can make you uncomfortable, and worst of all, it can ruin your hair, right? The list can go on, but then I realized, that the reason most people probably hate the rain is because its not perfect, or it doesn’t help create a perfect scene.

What does perfect even mean?

One day, one of my co-workers asked a favor of me, and I agreed with no hesitation. She looked at me in shock, and said “wow, you are a really nice person.” I just laughed, but she continued and explained that people wouldn’t do that. This wasn’t the first I’ve heard this. Many friends of mine and people I have encountered have said similar things, and have even gone as far to say that I am perfect. I would always stop them and ask why they said that. Their answers always included a list of things I don’t do, and that’s why I am ‘perfect.’ So, if you just do good things, are you perfect? What is the standard that we follow when identifying perfection? These are all questions I began to ask myself. So I did some research.

I never considered myself perfect. Why? I have made mistakes, done things I am not proud of, there are plenty of things. But, then I asked myself, what makes all those things not okay, or not perfect? I would always think because it would hurt other people, or growing up my parents would reprimand me, or it wasn’t the usual. But, in each of those situations, my lack of perfection was based off of what I’ve seen or what people told me. Don’t get me wrong, our parents and the people around us may have a pretty good idea of what is right and wrong because of experience. However, it is important to realize that the only perfect person on earth, was Jesus Christ. If there is any type of standard to follow, it is Him.

So, as a Christian, what does that mean for us? Is perfection really a thing? The book of James gives us some insight. James 3:2 says: “For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.” Why does James say this? When reading and trying to understand, Jesus is well aware of our human characteristics. He knows we struggle with our flesh, which is very weak. However, in this chapter, James explains the importance of wisdom. “If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom” James 3:12. So where does this wisdom come from? James 1:5-6 “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone.”

When I read this, I can see how people believe that perfection is just doing good deeds. But, James goes further and says living an honorable life and doing good things come from wisdom, and wisdom comes from God. So what does this all mean? If we belive that Christ is perfect, and He lives within us, then shoudn’t our standard of perfection only be Jesus Christ? Yes! As a Christian our dedication is to be Christ like. We must live a life that is representative of that. How is that done? Just like James described, ask God, and read His word. Ask God for wisdom. When we truly seek God, with a humble heart, He will provide the wisdom!

See, the world’s view of perfection only causes, low self-esteem, pain, hurt, and pressure. God, who has created us in His image (Genesis 1:27), shows that we are perfectly made. But, what is important to understand is that we must seek Him daily, read our word consistently, and strive to be like Him. Paul explains this in Philippians 3:12-15 “I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But, I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me.  No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”

Gosh, it is absolutely beautiful how the word explains EVERYTHING we question or wonder. Paul explains that he is not perfect, but he is striving to be like Christ, which he does by pursuing Him. Don’t worry about your past, your mistakes, and the idea that you were not good enough. God has created you in His image and all He wants from you is to pursue Him, and He will provide you with ALL that you need.

The rain may ‘ruin’ a lot of things, but if you think about how valuable it is, you begin to appreciate every single drop. It may not seem perfect, but it is a truly a gift from God. You are God’s masterpiece. You are not defined by the idea of perfection of this world, and you are made new in Christ once you have dedicated your life to Him. All you need to do is focus on Christ and allow Him to fulfill the beautiful story He has written for you. Be the masterpiece He created.

Be His Masterpiece

Love Y’all,

Dee

 

 

 

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