“Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh”? Gal. 3:3 ESV
Human perfectionism is an illusion. Those who strive to be perfect through their own efforts typically are covering up some fear, shame or hidden lie about themselves. Chasing perfection gives them a sense of control and makes them feel good about themselves. The truth be told though, the cost far exceeds the return of time and effort in the process. Like religion, perfectionism only covers the surface to make one feel good about themselves but never gets to the root of the problem.
If you or someone you know seeks perfection, pray for them to see, learn, and integrate what Paul writes about in Galatians. Through human effort, perfection only covers the problem. It never solves the internal hole that binds the person within perfection’s grip. The only long lasting solution is allowing the Holy Spirit to complete His work in you.
Yet Jesus did say that we should strive for perfection (Matt. 5:48). He stated that we should become perfect like our heavenly Father is perfect. However, the perfection he spoke about is built on the foundation of the Holy Spirit. It involves a renovation of the heart. A change of heart and mind focused on His work. He didn’t expect us to become perfect apart from the help he promised us.
His desire is that our character become like His. That by abiding in him he morphs his character into us. We become perfect not by our personal efforts, but by walking and living with him.
If you struggle with perfectionism, start by asking God to change your thinking of how perfection looks like and its fruitlessness. Then, instead of pursuing perfection, chase after excellence. You will find that perfection robs you of time, money, and relationships. On the other hand, excellence is about being effective. Perfection is expecting more than your best. Excellence is giving your best. Perfection is denying your humanity. Excellence is about taking your limitations and resources into consideration. Perfectionism seeks to glorify the self. Excellence glorifies God. Perfectionism leads to relational failure. Excellence leads to success.
Wherever you are in your journey with Jesus, stay focused in him, with him, and through him. He will via the Holy Spirit lead you to experience the freedom we have in him. Remember, perfectionism is slavery to a lie; instead let’s always pursue excellence in Christ.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
* Great Business Emulates a Good God
* Be Radical…Follow Christ!
* Simply The Messenger
* Unequally Married
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