Why I ditched perfectionism for freedom

3:49 PM

You’re not perfect. 

Take in a deep, deep breath, close your eyes, and accept that for the good news that it is. You are not perfect.

And oh, it is good news. Why? Because the problem with us is not that we aren’t perfect. The problem with us is that we try to be. 

Funny things happen when we try to be something we were never designed to be. Parts jam. Pieces break. Threads unravel. And you, friend, were designed to be good and to lean on a perfect God.

Ok, here’s what I mean. If you focus on growing in kindness, there is a good chance you will grow in kindness. You will probably read about what kindness is, meditate on Scripture, talk to friends about how they show kindness in difficult situations, ask God to give you patience and take an extra pause when you’re angry. You’re focusing on something good and how you can grow. You're opening yourself up to change.

If you focus on being perfect, there is very little chance that you will grow much in any particular area. Why? Because you’re absorbed in yourself. How are you measuring up? How do others perceive you? Are you doing enough? Are you successful? Are you letting others down? Me. Me. Me. There isn’t much room for kindness in the race to perform.

My obsession with perfection was a big problem in my marriage until I realized that it was actually a wedge between me and my husband. Because I wanted to be perfect more than I wanted to be loving, gentle, kind, forgiving (fill in the blank), my pride always came first. 

 When I was wrong, I couldn’t even hear out his frustration because criticism was such a blow to my identity. One chink in my armor and I would fall apart. I didn’t understand why he was upset with me because I was trying to be perfect for him! Right? But in reality, I was loving myself a whole lot more than I was loving him. He knew I was imperfect anyway, so my show certainly wasn't impressing him. It was just closing off opportunities for grace, and opportunities for growth.

If you’re still trying to be perfect, please give yourself permission to let go. Life is not a performance, and the world is not your judge. Release perfection to the One who is perfect, and let him make you good. I think you'll be amazed at the change you can make in the world when it's not weighing on your shoulders!

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