It’s a major part of my life. It consumes everything I do and say.
The struggle of constantly trying to be perfect. It has become an obsession. It has been an obsession….for far too long.
Whether it is perfecting every area of my life, or fixing something imperfect so everyone can think it is perfect, or criticizing myself when something doesn’t meet my expectations.
But the inside.
Oh the inside. The inside is a wreck. My heart hurts from all the times I haven’t lived up to my own expectations.
Where should the boundaries be? What are the expectations that I should have for myself and others? Where is that line between “doing your best for the Lord” and demanding that everything I say and do and how I look has to be perfect?
Because right now, they are not in a very healthy place.
Right now they are stifling, consuming, and demanding.
God is holding out His hands, waiting for us take them and be wrapped in His grace.
He is waiting for us to take a hold of the world He is offering us, a world where we don’t always have to be perfect.
Because Jesus took that burden of perfection with Him when He died.
Perfectionism was nailed to the cross along with shame, guilt, comparison, pride, and every other sin of the world.
When we take our eyes off the cross, we focus them on ourselves.
Our strivings. The ways we can look better and look like we have it all together. But I don’t want my eyes to be on myself anymore. I am imperfect. I mess up.
But He doesn’t! He is ever faithful, unchanging, PERFECT. He will never let you down. He will never make you be someone that you aren’t. He will never set expectations for you that you can’t fulfill.
I don’t have to be perfect, because Jesus was perfect.
I want you to do something super vulnerable. Wherever you are, I’d like to you speak that out loud over yourself. Even if you’re in a public place and you think people are going to look at you strange. (Perfectionism again…..) It’s time we start speaking life over ourselves instead of death. It’s the time for truth and encouragement.
I wish that I could have definite answers for you.
A list of how to overcome perfectionism. I don’t know if it’s something that you have already overcome, or if you’re in the same boat as me. I wish that I could invite you to a party that I’m already attending. I wish I could tell you that I have it all figured out already.
But then again, that’s my perfectionism talking. Because there’s the lie in my head that you only want to hear about things I’ve already overcome. Instead of being vulnerable and saying, “Hey, I know what you’re going through and I’m going through it too. So how about we figure it out together?”
So I’m here to tell you that perfectionism? It’s a lie.
We don’t have to be perfect. We don’t have to have it all figured out. It’s okay to extend grace to ourselves, because God extends grace to us.
Maybe like me, you think being perfect is being beautiful.
And if I’m being my real self, it’s not going to be beautiful all the time. Most of the time it’s going to be messy and real and vulnerable.
On the surface, there isn’t a lot of beauty about a mess. But in the mess of our hearts is where God is doing His greatest work, and there is where we find freedom. And freedom is always beautiful.
God, I pray that You will break these chains of perfectionism in our lives. I pray that You will show us how to lay down our striving and our own strength, and look to You for Your grace and mercy when we have expectations for ourselves that are not Your expectations for us.