Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Perfectionist

I must admit something, I am a terrible perfectionist. When someone is hurting, I want to make it better. When I don't understand something, I want it laid out in clear, precise terms. When I fail, I take it personally. In other words, I like to be in control and when life is not in perfect order I don't know what to do. And today I realized something, I can't be in control of everything. As I look back over my life, I realize that I have all to often been legalistic. I've tried being a perfectionist for myself, others and God. I believe that Jesus died to save me from my sins and yet I still keep trying to measure up. I've given my life to the One who created it and yet I still try to hold on. I try to attain some unreachable standard, and I can't. I realize that I still look at God as a task master, someone who is waiting with a list of "To Do's". When the truth is, God sent His Son to die, so that the "To Do" list could be erased. My perfectionism has gotten in the way. It's okay to strive to be our best but what we must remember is that our best will never be good enough. That's why Jesus died. There is absolutely nothing we can do to earn that gift, we just have to take it.  The list that is in our heads, the list that makes us feel hopeless, the list that feels so long is not God's list at all. The only purpose that this list serves is to make us feel hopeless and defeated, because no matter how many things you mark off the list it will never be enough. So, that is what I have learned today; perfectionism is only going to get in your way, because you can never be perfect enough. So I'm going to have to let it go. I'm going to have to let some things be messy and some things be unanswered and I'm going to have to trust. Because I know the hope that is in Jesus Christ, it's for you and me. Don't let perfectionism get in the way of the beautiful life of freedom that is waiting for you.

Ephesians 2:8-9
"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—  not by works, so that no one can boast."

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