Perfection

Perfection

{Perfection}

Is this a word you know well?

You know, growing up I never thought I was a perfectionist. At anything. Well, think again, girl!

When was the last time you just had to be the best at something? At something you’re passionate about and you love so much. And, if you’re not the best (and most of us probably are not…I mean, there’s always someone better than us), what do you feel?

Why do we feel the need to strive for perfection? Why do we feel like if we’re not the best at the things that we love, we’re not good enough, we’re a failure, we’re second-best? Why are we so comparison-based? If we weren’t focused on how we stack up against others and were instead focused on our successes and how to better ourselves, how much more of a fulfilling life would we live?

I think we start off with the wrong assumptions about God, ourselves, and our lives…so that is where we go wrong first and if we identify those things first, then we can know where to start in how to correct it in our lives.

First, you are loved.

Although quoted too much,

John 3:16 | “For God so loved the world that He gave His only son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

If He didn’t love you, would He really have sent his only son to die for you?! Also, Jesus died to give us LIFE. Not just after death. But now. Starting right now, Jesus has given you new life. Abundant life. Free. Beautiful. What does that mean to you?

Galatians 2:20 | “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.”

1 John 4:9-11 | “In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”

We might live through him. We have a reason to live, and it’s not to try to prove ourselves to everybody through our accomplishments, even people who are close to us (or supposed to be close to us).

Second, you are enough.

God created you exactly as He wanted you to be. He has led you along on a crazy journey that is all your own. Nobody has experienced things in exactly the same way as you have, yet you are able to relate to others and they can relate to you as well. He has not left you lacking something important that you need in order to be fulfilled and to live the life that He wants for you. In fact, you have everything that you need (here, in this very moment!!) to continue on this journey and be who you are meant to be! He has made us for relationships, which is why we so desperately want people to look at us and accept us and congratulate us and be proud of us, but that is just another way humans have messed this up. God wants a relationship with us, which should be the first place that we should look for these things, instead of people.

What helps you when you are tempted to strive for perfection? What do you do when you know you are striving to make someone proud of you, or for love, or for other things like that? 

It Is He

It is He

If you saw my Instagram post at the beginning of the year, you know that my word for this year is Be. In case you didn’t get the chance to read through my reasons for that (which you can still definitely do, and that would be awesome!), here’s a recap:

Be.

This word reminds me to just be who I am. No strings attached. No ulterior motives. With NO FEAR of what others think of me, or what their expectations are.

This word reminds me that I matter. Just as I am. I don’t have to do anything to earn God’s love; yet I have it. I don’t have to do anything to earn other people’s love. The people that matter most to me love me as I am, no matter what I look like, or what state I’m in at the time. I don’t have to prove my worth to anyone.

I just have to be. Live. Make mistakes & grow. Learn how to live the life I imagine, even among the mess. Through the fear. Through the pain. Through everything that I have to work through personally.

Perhaps most importantly, this word reminds me that I no longer have to fight my own battles, because Jesus will fight them for me. I don’t have to strive for perfection or to be the best at everything anymore.

This is me. This is the year for me to start afresh. This is the year to be vulnerable and openly say “Here I am, Lord. I’m a mess, but you love me anyway.” This is the year for me to get past everything that has been holding me back. I am not who I was. And I am going to start trying to believe that I am not where I need to be yet, but I SURE AS HECK am making progress and moving in the right direction. I will get there. Slowly, definitely. But I am getting there.

I bring this up again for 1) I need to constantly remind myself of these truths. I need to continually encourage myself and remind myself what my mindset is going to be for this year. I need to think positively about this year as a whole and think about all the amazing possibilities for me this year, personally, as well as in every other area of my life! Also, 2) I was reading Psalm 108 a couple days ago and I love the last verse. It says:

“With God we shall do valiantly; it is he who will tread down our foes.”

{Psalm 108: 13}

Throughout this chapter, David is talking about war and foes and enemies. But then he comes to the conclusion that… we’re good. I’m good. Because God is on our side. We will win, because we have someone else fighting our battles for us!

What battles have you been trying to win all on your own lately?

I know I could put a whole long list down here of the battles that I have been trying to fight on my own. Could you?

What I have noticed when I try to do that is this:

I am exhausted. Seriously, so tired.

I am defeated. Every Single Time.

Honestly, I’m kind of hopeless. “Will this ever get better?”

“Am I even making progress?”

“What am I doing wrong….?”

So many questions swirl around in my head with no answer.

As well as others.

I am tired of being exhausted. By the way, do you know how exhausting it is to be constantly fighting a battle inside your head? It’s freaking tiring, if you don’t know. And that leaves you with ZERO energy to do the things you love, like hang out with people, and give your best to your schoolwork, your work, your friends, your hobbies, church….anything! And come on, who likes to be defeated all the time, anyway?! It’s time to stop being pushed back down. It’s time we let someone else fight our battles for us.

Someone who loves us. More than we can ever KNOW. Someone who is stronger than whatever we’re dealing with and going through. Someone who will never get tired, and someone who will NEVER get defeated.

It is He