Today I was dwelling upon the concept of perfection.
It is not something to take lightly, because we live in a society that demands perfection.
…or, at least, the strive towards perfection is what I should write. Society highly encourages people to vigorously fight for perfection. I mean, why else would we have plastic surgery, overworked individuals, or broken relationships in today’s society?
The media shows us what we should look like.
The workplace teaches us the expectations that we need to have for ourselves and others.
Relationships come with unwritten rules to abide by for longevity.
The concept of reaching perfection is all around us.
The pressure is so strong that we, as the church body, start to demand it of ourselves and others.
We create things and get upset when it does not meet a certain set of standards.
We look at ourselves in the mirror and begin to criticize our image.
We look at others and compare how close to perfection they are, including ourselves within the ranks we somehow establish.
Unfortunately, the truth is that this disease has effected the body of Christ.
I have also been diagnosed positive with the sickness, so don’t worry. I am with you.
The ultimate consequence of being sick with perfection is that our spiritual growth is hindered.
Yes, we do not spiritually grow in our Christian walk by meeting criteria set before us.
Ouch! …I feel your pain.
The body of Christ is under the impression that we are closer to God if we do good things, making ourselves as close to the standards as possible. We become so focused upon giving the Lord our best that we fail to empty ourselves of our worst.
Understand: Doing good works in not the disease that I am referring to here. The Lord definitely calls us to be people of action. My aim is for those, myself included, who end up placing good works upon the throne of life instead of God almighty. This happens when we start to think that our good works cover our sins. We look at our sin and then immediately look towards our good works because the good that we are comfortable with doing is just that; better than the sin. We justify our lack of handling the sin by saying, “Well, God loves me anyways. It is okay.” or “God understands that I don’t have time to deal with that. I will take care of it as soon as such and such thing happens” or, even worse, “God understand that I wouldn’t do this if I didn’t have such and such thing. It’s my enabler and God understand that I cannot live without it”
My friend, all of the above is true. I am not saying otherwise. Yes, God does love us. Yes, God does call us to do good works. Yes, we ignore the knocking of the Holy Spirit upon our hearts.
Come on. You know it’s true. I know it’s true. The Lord does too.
What is ALSO true is that God wants us to grow in our spiritual walk. We can only do this if we seriously deal with our sin by giving it to the Lord Almighty.
The process is not an easy one. We know this. This is the reason we avoid the change in the first place, right? Am I alone? Hey, I’m just glad we were never promised an easy rode or I would feel super…well, hoodwinked.
First, let’s take the harsh pill of reality that the Lord is not impressed with our best. Our best does not grant us a good standing with the Lord. Although, it might grant us good a standing with others. It simply does not work with God.
Second, we need to recognize that the Lord has already been impressed by the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We don’t need to impress Him. The question remains of our impression of the man, Jesus Christ.
Third, grasping the previous two steps of healing in our minds and hearts, we need to declare war upon the concept of perfection that is holding us back from truly growing spiritually in our walk with the Lord. It is time to put your big, adult underwear on and say, “No More! I will not continue in this cycle of sin. I have my big person undies on now, Satan. Roar!”
I did want to warn you that we will never stop fighting against sin until the Lord comes back because: one, we are sinful human beings; and two, we simply cannot understand the complete depth of our sin against the Almighty God. We will never be without sin while in the flesh, my friend.
But Honestly… if we wholeheartedly engage the three steps, we are showing the Lord that we are not a lukewarm church. We are a church that is on fire. We are a church that is not afraid of being refined so that His light can show brighter than before. We are a church that will stop at nothing to be more like Christ every, single day. We are a church that is not okay with simply meeting a checklist of so called “perfection” but with sparking a fire in those around us for His holy name’s sake.
Church, we understand the value of the cross: build the kingdom.
We can only do this when we give all of ourselves to the Lord in complete surrender, including the ugly.
What is encouraging is that the truth does not end with us giving our sin to the Lord. The Lord returns forgiveness and purity for our disgusting trash.
Wow. I am just consistently humbled with adoration for what my Hero teaches me everyday, falling more and more in love with Him.
“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” ~ 1 John 1:8-9 (NIV).
Your fellow perfectionist,
Be Blessed! Be Encouraged