Sunday, August 11, 2013

Why Holding Out For Perfect Doesn't Work

"When you hold out for perfect, you end up holding nothing." -Ann Voskamp

And when you read something like that, it strikes your heart. When so much of your spare time is spent worrying about the future, afraid that you might give in before the perfect comes, and when you lay in the dark with eyes wide open imagining perfection, you realize how empty you really are.

I think about tomorrow, and draw the breath in. I think about next year and after school and where He could send me, and will I ever breathe again?

And oh, how I want perfect! I want to know I made the right decisions, chose to spend time with the right people, bought the right one-way ticket to the right broken, beautiful land, lived the right way, and believed the right things. But my heart doubts that I'll ever know what the right, what the perfect is, and it paralyzes me from doing.

I hide. I bunker deep down and deep in and keep away from all that might possibly not be right. I get to know people, but I never let them know me, and I avoid major decision making like I avoid the edge of a roof, because I know if I come close I might fall... I might jump. And then it would all be over. No going back, no do-overs, no second chances at living this life right.

And then I stop. I wonder. What if Ann is right? What if in all the grace she's been given and is pouring out, she struck the truth?

If I keep living like this, I'll come to the end empty-handed. Fear of sub-par living will fade in the face of emptiness. Sub-par would have been better than even this. What if the perfect - His perfect will for me - is passing by and I don't even realize because I'm too busy worrying, eyes strained for perfect? Isn't it so hard to find the balance between acting to pursue what might be His will, and sitting back to watch what He could do? I haven't found the perfect place on the balance beam yet.

So I keep waiting, waiting to see that He knows, and I don't have to. That perfection isn't found in decision-making, or people, or plane tickets, or ministries, or lifestyles, or beliefs.

Perfection is a Person. Just like Peace is a Person and Joy is a Person and Hope is a Person, and they are all the same.

Christ is my peace, joy, and hope, and He must be my perfection as well. No need to strain eyes and mind and heart for the perfect, it's right here. In Him.

Keep teaching me. To trust, and to find all that I am searching for in You. To cease this crazy desperate worry, this striving, and to know that You. Are. God. The One who sustains, loves, guides, and protects. The One who has given every good thing to me, and knows that they are perfect. May I realize all I hold, the Spirit of God that dwells within this frail surrendered flesh, and not hold out, but hold up all in thankfulness. May I embrace the broken, of both myself and others, and trust that you will make everything beautiful in its time. Teach me that I cannot thwart Your purpose. You will do all You please, and it will be.


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