“If it’s not done perfectly, it’s not worth doing at all.”
I lived under this attitude of perfectionism for too many years. So much so, it was suffocating.
perfectionism :: personal standard, attitude, or philosophy that demands perfection and rejects anything less
Why or how that came to be, I’m not quite sure.
Maybe it was because I was a people-pleaser, and my desire to perform to please others caused me to focus on being “perfect.” If I did whatever I was doing perfectly, it would please whomever I was doing it for, right?
Or quite possibly the standard to achieve I set for myself was such a stretch, doing my tasks perfectly would be the only way to attain it. If I did whatever I was doing perfectly, I would achieve my perfect life, right?
Or maybe it was because I wanted to appear perfect in others’ eyes to be accepted. If I did whatever I was doing perfectly, others would like me, right?
All of these lines of thinking seemed to fit.
I lived under the burden of perfectionism.
Yet, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t do much of anything perfectly. No matter how hard I tried, I continued to mess things up. Every single day.
Sure, I knew the only One perfect in this world was Jesus, yet I still thought I needed to be.
There is no one on earth who does what is right all the time and never makes a mistake. Ecclesiastes 7:20 GNT
And as I tried to be perfect and couldn’t be, I would walk through times of questioning my worth and value. If I wasn’t perfect, what good was I??
Until I learned a life-changing truth:
Despite my imperfections, God still loved me and counted me worthy.
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 NIV
I began to understand I could live an imperfect life and still be accepted and loved. And I could be okay with my imperfections, and enjoy my imperfect life. One day at a time.
But he said to me, “My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you.” 2 Corinthians 12:9a
Through God’s grace, my imperfections and mess-ups are opportunities for Him to be glorified. They are moments when I become less and He becomes greater. They are times when He does what I cannot do. And it’s all of Him and nothing of me.
These instances are when I stand back in awe… In awe of what He does through my beautifully imperfect life.
Friend, I pray you’ve never experienced the agony of this burden. If you have or are currently, I lift you in prayer today, and I hope this part of my journey will encourage you. God loves you just as you are. You don’t have to be perfect. You, nor I, were created to be so.
You can be beautifully imperfect you, living out a beautifully imperfect life.
That’s not to say we aren’t to try and live good and pleasing lives. This doesn’t mean we become lazy and apathetic. Not at all. Because God’s grace meets us in our imperfections, we are motivated to do all we can to love Him and glorify Him in and through our lives.
A beautifully imperfect life, one day at a time.
From one imperfect person to another, you are loved!