I think deep down inside of each of us is the desire to be perfect. To look perfect, to act perfect, to have no flaws, no sin. To fit this mold and these crazy high expectations or standards we’ve set for ourselves and even others. To never mess up. And we try. We try so hard to be perfect, at least in the areas we can work hard at and attempt this perfection…but it’s like chasing the wind. No matter how hard we try, we aren’t going to catch it!
PERFECT (adj) being entirely without fault or defect; corresponding to an ideal standard or abstract concept; mature, pure, complete
When I read that definition, the One person that comes to mind is Jesus Christ. He was entirely without fault or defect; He certainly set the standard for us, didn’t He? He was and is the epitome of completeness, purity and maturity.
“He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in His mouth.” 1 Peter 2:22
I wish that once we choose Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we would immediately become just like Him…but that’s not exactly how it works. We can try and try and try to be good and do good but we will fail, we will mess up and get exhausted in the process! He knows we aren’t perfect, and He loves us anyway! I’m sure what He doesn’t love is us trying to be perfect and striving for perfection on our own.
Matthew 5:48 says to “be perfect because I am perfect” (some versions say Holy). Woah. No pressure right? But what this verse is saying is that Christ set an unattainable standard, which sums up what the law demands. But HE met this standard on our behalf; so we don’t have to. Oh dear Jesus thank you!
“In a word, what I am saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.” Matthew 5:48 (MSG)
The more time we spend with Jesus, in prayer or in His word, the more we will be like Him. And it is not of ourselves, it is of Him.
“In Him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in Him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit.” Ephesians 1:13 (ESV)
If we are saved, we are guaranteed the Holy Spirit- Gods Spirit which demonstrates the genuineness of our faith and proves we are God’s children. I think we often underestimate the power that is in us as Believers! We have HIS Spirit! And it’s the Holy Spirit’s work in us that transforms us into the likeness of Christ, and nothing we can do on our own, aside from choosing to follow Him.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast.” Ephesians 2:8,9
What if this need for perfection in ourselves and in our lives is the result of us being built to need Him? Of our hearts being restless until we rest in Him? What if it is the fact that He has set eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11) and we so greatly desire that completeness and wholeness whether we know we do or not?
I want to be perfect, I’ll admit it. I want to be the perfect Christian, mom, wife, daughter, sister and friend, but I’m so not nor will I ever be! I would love it if my house always looked perfect, if there were never any left over fries or apples in my minivan, and if I never had to get onto my children…but that’s never going to happen! This is life on earth, not heaven!
He set eternity into our hearts and He created us to need Him daily-momently! This won’t make us perfect but letting Him live through us and resting in His grace is the closest we will come to perfection this side of our eternal home. And there is so much peace in that. So much contentment in letting Him fill the void inside with His love, grace and truth.
Nothing else on earth will satisfy.
“He is so rich in kindness and grace that He purchased our freedom with the blood of His Son and forgave our sins.” Ephesians 1:7
Thank you Lord for sending your perfect son, 100% You 100% man, to be perfect for us. To die on a cross and our sins, bad choices and imperfections be placed upon Him, the One and Only “perfect” to walk this earth. Thank you for loving us amidst our imperfections and sins. Help us to choose YOU daily; to grow in your love and rest in your grace.