I started my blog, Biblically Led Cornbread Fed, because I noticed that so many of us, women especially, try to appear perfect.
Perfect: Absolute, complete, something completely free from faults or flaws.
When I began to contemplate the fact that so many of us do not want to acknowledge our less than perfect state, it made me meditate on the why. I understand that not all of us try to appear perfect for the purpose of acting like we have it all together or because we are striving to be the ultimate example of how life is supposed to be had a person done everything perfectly. There are actually some, what seems, passable reasons. Some of us don’t want to face our flaws so we cover them up like everything is ok. A few of us don’t want others to know that we failed in a particular area so we mask that area of our lives because of shame. And most importantly, most of us just don’t want others to know our “business” and put ourselves out there to be judged and condemned by this perfect world that we live in. The problem is though... we have made our imperfections inadequacies.
Inadequate: Insufficient, not good enough, too small in amount, a lack of confidence that makes you feel unable to deal with a situation.
When I read the definitions of inadequate, it sounds condemning and FINAL. The focus is placed so much on me and how I missed the mark and makes me seem unsalvageable. It puts the focus on me and not on Christ. However, the point of the gospel is that we are unable to save ourselves. We all “fall short”; we all “miss the mark” (Romans 3:23). When we realize that we ALL fall short and we ALL miss the mark in one area or another, it makes it easier for us to accept our imperfection.
Imperfect: Flawed, not perfect, lacking completeness, continuing state.
The truth is, we all make mistakes because we are not perfect. The feeling of wishing we had done things differently are normal and you are not the only one with that wish. So accepting that all of us are imperfect trying to perfect ourselves through Christ implores a new level of freedom.
Freedom from: Discontentment and frustration, trying to appear flawless and perfect to each other, pretending and masking pain, comparison to others.
Make no mistake about it, we are called to live godly lives and to submit to God. However, since we all sin and fall short, we need a Savior, and that’s why Jesus came. I need a Savior, she needs a Savior, he needs a Savior... we all need a Savior. You are not alone in the need for a Savior. It gives me comfort in knowing I am not the only one calling on Jesus a million times a day due to my imperfections and mistakes.
This is the turning point. Taking the trust out of ourselves to fix it and instead, putting our trust in Him. He forgives our shortcomings, imperfections, and iniquities so giving it to him gives us freedom to stop striving for an arbitrary, worldly “perfection” and rest in the Perfect One (Matthew 11:28). He can heal that. He can fix that. He can change that. He can mend that. He can remove that. He can do that. Moral of the story, it is not final. Rather, it is to be completed in Christ.
Philippians 1:6 says that completion is the work of God, not the work of LaTasha, Sarah, Kim, Elizabeth, Kesha, or whoever. He created us, saved us, and is faithful to perfect us. When we accept that we are imperfect and not inadequate, we change those “cans” to “wills!” He will heal that. He will fix that. He will change that. He will mend that. He will remove that. He will do that.
Moral of the story, I am not inadequate but I am imperfect in this area now and He is progressing that part of me. This allows me to give myself the grace that God gives me.
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
- 2 Corinthians 12:9
Starting today let us (myself included) accept the free gift of grace. Not accepting it is like someone giving us a free car but us choosing to walk every day. Let’s focus on progress, not perfection. Progress allows us to find our flaws and broken areas to give them over to God. When we give them to God and allow Him to work through us, He improves and grows us... perfecting us!
I am in no way saying accept every part of your life that is out of whack or embrace sin instead of striving to do better simply because you are imperfect. NO! What I am saying is acknowledge that you are human and strive to progress. You will never reach the benchmark of perfection, especially when it is being defined by imperfect people. Striving for perfection causes us to not answer callings on our lives because we are waiting until we have it all together (which will be never), not pursue passions because we feel inadequate, not help others because we don’t want them to know our stories, and it also causes us to push perfection onto others which they were not called to be.
Choose every day to forgive yourself. You are human, flawed, and your mistakes are WHAT you did not WHO you are! Most of all, you are worthy of all that God has for you! Own your imperfections but strive to progress and let Him perfect!