The poison of perfection

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One woman spends 25 hours just to prepare one child’s birthday cake. It’s gotta be just so. Another woman spends so much time cleaning her floors that you could eat off them. She is constantly sweeping up the stray dog hairs and wiping up any errant piece of dirt that appears. It has to be spotless, she thinks. Yet another friend obsesses about the baby weight that she still has not lost, even though her little one is only four months old. But so-and-so did it, she thinks.

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And all of a sudden I begin to believe that I am just.not.good.enough.t

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True confessions: most of my birthday cakes come from boxes. My floors are (often) dirty, covered in the most recent meal and other random items that end up there. I haven’t yet painted our bedroom even though we have been here almost 3 years now.  I’ve also been informed that grey is the new neutral, so my currently beige living room is no longer in vogue. 🙂
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With Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and other social media we are constantly bombarded by details of others’ lives. And we begin to compare ourselves.
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Hmmm, I wonder. Why is it that her house always looks so tidy? Or how did she have the time to prepare the crazy-beautiful cake + prepare all the 12 amazing activities that occurred at that party I just sent my daughter to? How could she have … {fill in your own blank here}
Perfection is a lie.
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Perfection is unattainable.
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And yet the lie that our culture feeds us is that perfection is the ideal, the standard.
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The problem comes when people are unaware; when they believe that the lies our culture throws at us are true. Our culture believes in perfection. Perfection gets a lot of praise and acclaim in our society and so people find reward in choosing that. But at what cost? It does a disservice to themselves and to others around them.
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God believes in mess. I’m certain of it.
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In fact, when I go to someone’s house and the floor is dirty, and there are toys, crumbs and art supplies everywhere, I breathe a sigh of relief. It frees me to be imperfect. This is a gift. Somehow I sense that this person understands mess and will not judge me for being messy. They believe that other things are more important than a perfectly tidy home.
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When someone is so wrapped up in perfection it is usually an indication that they are believing a ‘lie’ as opposed to a truth that is found in God’s Word. This is why I believe so strongly in prayer ministry and inner healing work. God’s Spirit is able to gently pry open the memory banks to reveal the root cause of a destructive belief, in someone’s life. Then, and only then, can it be dealt with.
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When we choose to believe the lies of the enemy, often woven right into the culture, it destroys our spirits. We all do it in some form or another. That is why I believe that every person can benefit from prayer ministry. But often people are too afraid. Or they actually think that they don’t need any. I have yet to meet someone who has gone through this world unscathed by events and circumstances. I have yet to meet someone who couldn’t use some words from the Spirit to touch their wounded heart.

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God is more loving than anything we can comprehend. He wants to change us to be more like Jesus. But we need to be willing to surrender. This seems scary, but actually, surrender brings freedom.

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It brings freedom from the judgements of others, from the comparison monster. It brings freedom from the things inside that bind us fast to our past, to our mistakes, to the vows we have made, to the ways that we have agreed with the enemy, rather than with the Lover of our souls. I can be free from others’ opinions of me, in my messy state.
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People are messy. Life is messy. And God is right in the middle of it. He knows that perfection on earth is unattainable.
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I reject the lie: I reject perfection.
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Mess is why grace exists.
And I choose grace.
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Father God, I lift up those of us who struggle with perfection.  Lord, some of us likely don’t even recognize the lies that we are caught in. Jesus, would you break through to our spirits? Would you enable us to hear your voice that whispers to us about your true freedom? Teach us what it means to worship in spirit and in truth. Would you help us to let go, and let you take the reins? Father, please speak to us in a way that we can hear. I know you are gentle and good, and such a loving Father. Help us to know you in a deeper way. Amen.

 

 

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5 responses »

  1. So appreciated your thoughtful prayer this morning and the way you always put words to what my heart feels but can’t always articulate.

    God is doing awesome things in you!

    Jude

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  2. Amen Kristen! We have lived here for 16 years and have still not painted out bedroom! Every other room in the house yes but not ours 😉

    thanks for your blog today – it really hit the spot for me!

    • I’m so glad, Helena! Also glad that you have not yet painted your bedroom. It’s obvious to me, with such amazing kids, where your priorities have been. I hope to have ours done sometime before the 16 yr mark. 🙂 But no guarantees!

  3. Pingback: The poison of perfection | mikewolfrm83139

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