Striving for perfection

The world strives in its own ways for perfection in what does or what it thinks and they way they dress, look, and most of it is pretty superficial.  But Christians also strive for perfection to be like Jesus, and to know Him better.

Jesus made this statement:

48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

When I am cooking a meal that I like, like maybe spinach curry.  I put all the right ingredients, according to their measure from what I have been trained to do, and then I find that by God’s special touch, the food has come out perfect to my taste.

That’s the way God is with us.  He is the Potter and we are the clay.  He shapes us and molds us and perfects us into His very likeness and image, and each day He is delighted in the fruit that we bear and He says “perfect.”

John 15 says:  “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

Roses are very beautiful, but a good gardener knows that he has to trim the rose bushes for them to bear fruit.  He also has to water them and give them enough light.  The Word is the water, and Jesus through His Holy Spirit is the light.

Sometimes we go through valleys and ups and downs, but in the end that is because of discipline because the Word of God says, “No discipline is joyful, but is grievious and painful, but in the end produces peacable fruits of righteousness to those that have been trained by it.”

A sculptor is looking for beauty in his creation the same way God is creating beauty that comes from Himself within creation.  When the sculptor is sculpting He can mold the creation whatever way He deems fit, and when He is dealing with people, God shapes them each into a creation the way that He orchestrated and designed in His perfect will.  Some of the pieces may be abstract, or look kind of funny, or look misshapen, or may even be cracked vessels, but in them He is creating beauty.

Sometimes we are so bogged down by sin, guilt, and shame, that we do not see the beauty that God has created in us.  He’d rather us not feel sorry for what we did, then miss out on us seeing the beauty He put in us when He created us. We were fearfully and wonderfully made.  God knew us before we were in our mother’s womb.  We were knit so intricately and woven into pieces by perfect design, but He wants us to realize that design He created in us, after we accept the Holy Spirit in our life.  Before we accept the Holy Spirit, our righteousness is like filthy rags, but after we have the Holy Spirit, we take upon ourselves His righteousness, so we can no longer live in darkness, but obtain pure perfection which is in the light of Jesus Christ.

The Lord has given us joy, so we must not wallow in doubt, fear, unbelief, murmuring, complaining, and disappointments.  He is waiting for us to realize that all the time we’re missing just worrying about being disobedient to Him and being cast away from His presence.  Would a mother rejoice in a baby that refuses to love her?  Would a mother rejoice in seeing her child in pain?  No good mother would.  She would be grieved.  The same way our Heavenly Father is grieved when we don’t experience His love for us.  He is there for us when we need Him.  But sometimes when we are going through hard times we cannot see that so then in the journey to seek the perfection and complete maturity in Christ, we get weighed down by all these circumstancial things.

True perfection is a about an attitude of the heart, which can be shown by thoughts and words.  Your thoughts and words have to change before your deeds do.  You can do all the deeds, but if your intent and thoughts and attitudes of the heart are not right, then they are not going to bear the “perfect” recipe of delight to the Lord’s mouth.  He may have to go and sprinkle some more spices on you just so that you add up to that right flavor.  He wants you to be just right.  If we feed off Him, and take delight in Him, then it is a sure way channel to reach into perfection.  The more we rely on Him, and trust on Him, and just relax and not worry about trying to achieve and trying to grasp and trying and trying and trying….only to make mistakes over and over again, the more we will see it is about acceptance.  Like Hannah Hurnard says in Hinds Feet in High Places, – “Acceptance with Joy”.  The Christian life is the ultimate metamorphosis process, and without Christ people get lost in the way of finding what they are truly supposed to be like and in the end look for things that don’t really matter.  Each life is valuable and has purpose, and when we see a life wasted away, some of us look carelessly, and think, just another statistic, but to know what’s in God’s heart is a totally different thing.  That’s why Jesus had to come, because in the Old Testament God had rules for disobedience, and they did not follow, so instead, they gave a person, which is Jesus, who took on the personification of perfection and laid it down before us so we can grasp and attain it.  We are no longer living in this world of sin, but living as heirs of perfection of Christ through the Holy Spirit.

So all of this striving and reaching and attaining for perfection is in vain, unless you realize first why God created you, and your redeemed value in Christ.  It’s Christ’s mission to make you realize the redeemed value that you have in Him, and where you stand through His eyes.

There is wellspring of knowledge and insight, and presence, and perfection, of God through the Holy Spirit, only so much more than we can possibly hope to attain or seek in one life time, but Oh, to be with Christ, and to see the eternal salvation, that awaits us on the eternal side of this life, would bring joy.  We must also seek, therefore, on this earth to have that fullness of perfection in realization of the redemption of Christ, as we submit our own weaknesses and allow Him to make beauty and perfection out of them.  Because only out of Him does beauty and perfection lie.

 

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