FOCUS QUESTION: How are you dealing with imperfection?
Up until a few months ago, I had the HARDEST TIME dealing with imperfection. I apologized a lot (I mean, a LOT) and have done so for as long as I can remember. They were genuine apologies, because I really was sorry, but they were not necessary apologies.
It wasn’t unusual for me to hear, “Why are you apologizing? STOP APOLOGIZING.”
But, I couldn’t…
…because it’s impossible to solve a problem without knowing the underlying cause. We may find quick fixes, but unless we tend to the ROOT of the problem, we’ll never stunt it’s growth.
It was really hard for me to stop apologizing for silly things because I had no idea why I always felt the need to apologize. That is, until I had an emotional breakdown (or three…I’m a girl, remember?).
I have been at WAR with my imperfections…and I’ve been distributing apologies as a result of my deep longing to always do, and say, the right thing.
I set ridiculously high expectations for myself…and leave no room for grace.
Because of this, I feel like I’m constantly failing people in small ways. As a result, I believe things like, “I’m not a good enough friend” or “I’m not a good enough daughter.”
SIDE NOTE: My friends and family don’t make me feel this way…I MAKE MYSELF FEEL THIS WAY.
For YEARS I have let Satan fill my head with those lies. I’ve let those thoughts grow louder until they were too deafening to ignore. I have let my imperfections reign over me.
As it turns out, I’ve been dealing with imperfection all wrong.
And you know what?
I’m not the only one.
After reaching out to some of my most trusted friends, I discovered many of them either have struggled, or were currently struggling, with that same feeling of not being “good enough” for anything or anyone. So, that’s what led me to write this post about dealing with imperfection.
If I’ve been struggling with it, and if many of my friends have been struggling with it, then, chances are, some of you may be struggling with it, too.
Here’s the thing…we’re NOT good enough; none of us are…but Jesus is. We need to stop focusing on our imperfections and who/what we’re not, and start focusing on our perfect Savior and who/what we are in Him.
We are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:13-14).
Each of us are recipients of His righteousness (Romans 5:17).
We’re called by His goodness and glory (2 Peter 1:3).
We are His chosen people, holy and dearly loved (Colossians 3:12).
Sometimes, we can be our very worst enemy. Dealing with imperfection is a work in progress and I’m (slowly) learning the difference between a necessary apology and an unnecessary apology.
I do not have to apologize if someone DOESN’T get offended by something I said or did, EVEN if I think I could have said or done it in a better way. This is a big one! At least, for me it is. I do not have to apologize for needing alone time. And let me tell you, I NEED IT!
I do not have to apologize for saying no. That’s also a big one. I do not have to apologize when it was my feelings that were hurt. LIKE…WHY DO I DO THAT????? It makes no sense whatsoever. Bless.
Let’s see…I do not have to apologize for getting excited about something God is doing in my life. I do not have to apologize for not being friends with someone who is toxic/not a good friend to me. No, no, and no. People are not going to understand…and we have to be okay with that.
I do not need to apologize for doing what I know is best for MY life. I do not need to apologize for being passionate about something. Yes, I do that…and no, it’s no necessary.
I AM HUMAN, A MORTAL, AN EARTHLING. It’s impossible for me to please everyone. My wording is not going to be perfect. My actions? They are not going to be perfect either. Neither is my memory! I’ve been putting WAY too much pressure on myself…and it’s time I start showing myself grace!
Here’s how I’m dealing with my imperfections:
- I’m trying to apologize only when it’s necessary (if I hurt someone’s feelings or had to break a promise, per se).
- Anytime I don’t feel good enough, I’m asking myself, “Why am I feeling this way? Is it because of the way this person is treating me, or am I making myself feel this way by putting too much pressure on myself?”
- I’m trying to control my thoughts by quoting scripture every time Satan attempts to fill my head with lies.
It’s okay to set high expectations for ourselves, but perfection should not be our goal.
Make sure the expectations you’ve set for yourself are realistic and always, always, ALWAYS leave room for grace.
How are you dealing with imperfection?