I constantly feel as though I am on the verge of disappointing someone. Name any person in my acquaintance, from God, to my husband, to my friends, to the person I just barely know, and everyone in between. I am sure that I somehow annoy, hurt, or let them down whenever I am around them. If not, I’m about to.
Of course, we all let people down at times, just as they let us down occasionally. I have often let people down. I know that’s just part of life. That’s not my concern.
I cannot seem to let go of perfectionism. Of my fear that something I say or do, don’t say or don’t do, will somehow lead to disaster and disappointment way more often than is reasonable to expect. It’s a constant companion, and it fights dirty. Really, really dirty.
In spite of the fact that I am in such a time, such a place, such a phase in my life for good reason, I have a hard time trusting that I really am the right person to live this life.
What if I’m not? What if I’m only God’s second-best choice for the people, times, and situations I am in?
This struggle is a constant companion, and I hate it.
Yes, I’m taking every thought captive, to the foot of the Cross. Yes, I am praying continually. Yes, I am seeking out wise counsel in the form of a mentor. Yes, I’ve had counseling. Yes, I read my Bible daily. Yes, I sometimes just fake it, in the hopes that the right mentality will eventually assert itself. Yes, I talk about it.
But still, there it is.
Even though I know I can’t be perfect this side of heaven, I still want to be. I worry that I am moving away from perfection and holiness, rather than toward it.
I have some very real flaws that need to change. I can step back and look at them. See them in all their hideousness. Glaring at me angrily, and refusing to let go of my heart. Sometimes, they strangle me. And yet…I still wake up me, and I don’t like me.
I like a few things about me, but I don’t like me.
Not the way God likes me.
And I’m on the loop again of why on earth anyone wants to spend time with me, ever.
See the problem?
Too much focus on me.
I want to get off this ride, forget about myself completely, and just walk in the joy and liberty Christ died to give me.
I must decrease. He must increase.
I kinda sometimes wish he would just force it, and be done with it.
But I know better.
Gentle Savior that he is, he will not let me go. Even now, he loves me.
I don’t get it.
But I will cling to the hem of his robe as hard as I can, and trust that there is an end in sight to this madness. For madness it is. To be sure of something, to know it for a fact, and to still disbelieve it is madness.
“For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God–through Jesus Christ our Lord!” ~Romans 7:22-25a (NIV)
As always, I am grateful for Paul’s example of the struggle with the madness that is sin. I am not alone in this. I will never be alone in this. Someday, I will conquer this by the grace of God.
Grace & Peace,