Nobody is perfect – but what about our own life?
Nobody is perfect
We all agree with that. Wall tattoos, posters and cards confirm that we all know this to be true.
However…. How about our own life?
How do we deal with our own shortcomings, failures and wrongdoings?
Most people I know, after facing their imperfection through an experience, will not say
“Well, I am not perfect, you know”
and live their life happily ever after.
Mostly, the confrontation with their own imperfection will bring many emotions about.
Because facing the reality that we are not perfect will bring most of us in touch with the feelings of shame, inferiority, feelings of failure and sadness.
We live in a society where perfection is celebrated. This not only in the world of fashion, sports or business – we live in a modern world where we can buy anything and everything from the perfect place right up to the perfect face.
Deep down, we know that we aren’t perfect. We know that our marriage, our children, our family, our own lives aren’t perfect.
But looking around us, we are faced with seemingly perfect realities.
- We see this marriage, this family, these children, this professional, this house, this car, this body… And we feel left out and insufficient.
- We find some kind of comfort in hearing stories from other people who are struggling. Of course, we are not happy for these other people who go through a difficult time – but we feel a bit better about ourselves, our own oh so imperfect reality.
- We put ourselves under great pressure in order to achieve some kind of perfection in our own lives, battling with frustration by facing this imperfect world we live in.
- We strive for perfection, all throughout lives – and that results in frustration, shame and many times a burnout.
- We hide behind a “perfect” appearance – always scared that by the time others see behind the facade, they will discover that we aren’t good enough.
There is a reason my website deals with the subject of how to be a “family that matters” and not of “how to be a perfect family”.
The reason is as simple as this: I can’t tell you how to be a perfect family.
Our family is not perfect. I am far from being perfect. My marriage is not perfect. We do not have a perfect education and certainly not a perfect life.
However, I have discovered a beautiful truth I would like to share with you today:
You don’t have to be perfect to make a difference. You don’t have to be perfect to have a fulfilled life. And you certainly don’t have to be perfect in order to be loved.
The content of my website is about this beautiful discovery.
The discovery of the reality that the difference between people around me who make a beautiful difference and me is not that they are perfect, and I am not.
What changed my life, the truth that brought my life to a very different place, has nothing to do with me understanding how to live a perfect life.
For many years, my life was bound by the shame of being as imperfect as I am.
I was very self conscient of my flaws: From my stuttering to my mistakes and wrong decisions, I felt totally inadequate to raise my voice or even to be a blessing to those around me.
The difference today is not even the total absence of those feelings of shame, inferiority and feelings of failure in times I am confronted with my imperfection.
Still today, there are times I have to face situations when I missed the point, made wrong decisions, when I hurt loved ones or failed to be that friend I would have liked to be.
In those times, even today, I face these feelings. However, they don’t determine my life anymore.
- What made me free was the realization, that not one of the persons I admire, whether they are friends who make a difference in our society, people in ministry, or other influential people on this earth, is perfect. When I study their lives (or get to know them) a little deeper, I am amazed over and over again of their imperfectness. How they were/are brings great change, freedom and beauty about. But still, they were/are ordinary people like you and me!
- What made me free was to understand a bit better how God looks at this whole subject.
How he’s not that God, looking from heaven to watch whether we behave, whether we do things right and perfect – and if we don’t, he reaches out to us to correct and punish us.
I got to know a God who is very different.
A God who is happy with us, who is smiling at us – in the midst of our imperfection.
A God who longs for us to receive his love. He longs for us to be happy and grateful for who he made us to be, see us flourish and lead us into his beautiful truth about our worth.
His love, approval and appreciation towards us don’t depend on our perfection.
- What made me free was the experience that the best way to combat those feelings of insecurity, shame or inferiority due to our imperfection is to face them – acknowledge them- and refusing to let them determine who I am and what I do with my life.
Those are the main points that brought me to a point I decided to not be bound any more by the shame of being as imperfect as I am.
Today, I still am aware of my imperfection. However, I grew into this deep gratefulness and consciousness of who God is and how able He is in the midst of my imperfection.
Today, I don’t strive for perfection anymore..
I strive for walking in love, seeing people with these eyes I know God sees me with.
I strive for excellence, not out of pressure but out of real devotion and gratefulness.
I strive for maturity and growth. And I strive to be a blessing all around me.