Saturday, June 25, 2011

Perfectly Imperfect

Wish you could see this giant smile on my face.  It's quite large----very goofy I might add. 

You see, I realized something rather important.  I've spoken many times about my tendency to get caught up in the dangers of perfectionism.  I can't attain it.  It drives me crazy.  It creates disaster after disaster. 

Tonight, I realized there IS something that I can reach a level of perfection in.  IMPERFECTION!  How awesome is that?  I'm perfectly imperfect.  I know, I'm crazy when that excites me so much!  It's just so gosh darn----freeing!  (OK, IL friends----I admit that was "spoken" with my full on southern accent)!

Seriously, it is an amazing feeling to have come to the realization that I am perfectly imperfect.  It gives me the freedom to accept all of my failures without punishing myself because I am perfectly the way God made me.  It gives me the freedom to let my guard down and be ME.  I admit that it's hard for someone that is so "tough" on herself to fully accept the FACT that God's love is UNCONDITIONAL.  We do NOT earn God's love and favor.  It is not by works that we are saved.  In other words, God does not love me more because I do this or that for Him and He doesn't love me less when I fall short of His expectations.  I don't have to get bogged down in feeling unworthy of His love and sacrifice.  That is SO easy for me to do!  Satan is GREAT about manipulating us into focusing on our failures/sins.  The truth is:  I am not worthy.  Yet, He loves me no matter what.  He loves me just as I am.  He will never abandon me because of anything I do. 

He knows all of my secrets.  He knows all of my flaws.  He knows each and every one of my deepest hidden thoughts.  He knows ALL of the ugliness that hides inside.  He knows what we look like on the inside and on the outside.  He knows how many hairs are on our heads.  He knows what is hidden in our closets.  It doesn't matter what kind of image we "put on" for the outside world.  He knows it all. 

Yet, He loves us anyway.  He LOVES us in our imperfection.  The Bible says in Romans 5:8:

"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

It doesn't say that when we are perfect, then He will love us.  It doesn't say that when we get ourselves "all cleaned up" and shiny, THEN He will love us.  I may scramble around frantically when someone announces they are coming over and make sure the house is spotless, but God doesn't expect that of me.  He loves me right smack dab in the middle of my filth----my sin covered self.  God loves YOU----exactly the same way.  He loves you with each and every one of your flaws.  Guess what?  He even loves us with those flaws that we try the hardest to keep the world from seeing. 

Though His love is unconditional, we do have responsibilities.  We are cutting ourselves off from his blessings and there are REAL consequences to sin.  However, He NEVER withholds his love.  Just like a GOOD parent disciplines in LOVE----so does our heavenly father.  He only wants the best for us.  We only want the best for our children so we have definite rules and expectations for them to follow.  When (not IF!) they fall short, we don't withhold our love from them.  Neither does God withhold His from us.

Perfectly imperfect.  I think I really am loving those two words together.  It's great to actually be perfect at something!  Don't we all REALLY crave that?  You don't have to be a perfectionist to crave being completely perfect at something.  It's great to be imperfect.  Perfection in any other capacity is impossible because there is only ONE that embodies perfection.  However, isn't it the most amazing feeling to know that you are completely, 100% loved unconditionally by someone the one that is perfect?   He is perfection, but yet He chooses to love us in our messed up, flawed, selfish imperfect states!  That is worth a HUGE smile!

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