Have you ever felt inadequate? That you don't measure up? That if you could just do something better or perfectly that you may be more accepted? I know I have been a victim of this line of thinking. Maybe I could earn people's approval if I people please everyone. Maybe if I earn straight A's then more people will like me. If I pitch a perfect game. If I wear the right clothes. Have the right body. Eat the right foods.
What if I told you that you are already enough for someone. What if there was someone who didn't demand perfection, who just wanted you as you are - broken, vulnerable, imperfect. Would you believe me?
I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing. ~Galatians 2:21 (NIV)
Someone does.... and that person is God.
We can be assured that through Jesus Christ we have been saved and are deemed worthy and enough. Meditate on these words from the book of Galatians spoken by Paul (formerly called Saul).
As background, Saul was a Pharisee and by all letters of the law - perfect. Saul knew the Scriptures, went to synagogue, was ritually pure - you get it perfect life on the outside. This "perfect lifestyle" was then threatened by Jesus and his apostles' teachings, which leads Saul to persecution of the early church. Yet, Saul has an encounter with Jesus en route to capture followers of The Way. Jesus meets him where he is, Paul is blinded by the light and has an encounter with Jesus that changes him forever in his heart and by name (read Acts 9).
An interpretation of Paul's life lived before Jesus and his subsequent writing in Galatians tells us that if anyone could have earned God's favor through perfectionism, it would have been Paul. Yet - he acknowledges his need for Jesus. Paul's words reach through time with a similar message to us today. Works and outward appearances don't make us enough. In fact, we are sufficient only through God.
Lord, help me to shed my desire for perfection on this Earth. Teach me to draw near to You. You have not called me to live a perfect life and I acknowledge that this is not possible. With Your Help, I will present myself not as perfect, but authentically because my authentic life demonstrates my need for Christ and Your Great Power. May the world know Your Name through my weaknesses. Amen.