Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 2:8-10)
Perfection is a 4 letter word. No, you say — it’s a 10 letter word. Whatever. It is a very bad word.
I’ve never considered myself a perfectionist, but I’ve noticed these past couple of weeks that I am one — although at first I couldn’t even call it that. I told our preacher last week that “it’s kind of like I’m a perfectionist, but I can’t find the right word to describe it.” He laughed and said, “Kendra, I could tell the first day we talked that you’re a perfectionist.” And the handful of people I’ve shared this revelation with have been like “Yeah. You didn’t know?”
Thanks for filling me in, y’all. I really need new friends.
Where it comes from, how to deal with it — well, I’m working on that.
But oh man. Everything I do now — it’s so painfully obvious that this is my problem.
I messed up supper a few nights ago, and it completely ruined the rest of my evening. My reasoning (very faulty reasoning, I have to say) is this: I failed at cooking this one meal, so I am a failure. I yell at my kids way too much, and lately I feel like a poor excuse for a mother. If I fail at that, I fail period. I am a failure. I closed my photography business because I wanted to focus more time and energy on my family, but most days I see it as I failed at my dream. I am a failure.
On and on, I could list a hundred more.
Part of the problem with growing up in church — meeting Jesus at such a young age — is that you learn about grace before you ever really experience it. And until you experience it, you never fully understand it. His strength is made perfect in my weakness. I love that. The simplicity. The power. I don’t have to be perfect or look perfect or appear perfect or do perfect — because He is perfect. And it’s when I fail that His love and mercy and grace and strength shine.
I’m just now starting to understand that.
P.S. I have so much more to share, but I may spread it out over a couple of weeks. This is a lot of text for a photography blog, you know?