Do you have that friend with the perfect spouse, perfect children, perfect job and perfect home? At least that’s the message they convey on social media and in-person conversations. While I applaud those that focus on the good things and resist airing their grievances in public forums, I also know that some of those sharing their good fortune in such a way are crafting an image of a life that’s not quite their personal reality.
Let me share a secret with you. Not only can this constant statement of perfection trigger feelings of irritation or even jealousy in others, it’s likely not doing a whole lot of good for their own contentment. The key to happiness, with yourself and your relationships, is to embrace the perfectness of imperfection.
What is it?
Ecclesiastes 7:20 tells us clearly that there is “not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and who never sins.” Our humanity has ruled out any possibility of pure perfection. Instead, we strive to live by Christ’s example. We can lean on Him as we work to improve the areas we are weak, knowing even when we stumble that we can get up and try again. Being perfectly imperfect means we keep realistic expectations while we continually work to be better today than we were yesterday and to seek forgiveness when we fall short.
Why embrace it?
God loves us, not despite our shortcomings, but because He accepts us ‘as is.’ You don’t love your child less when they are misbehaving. You may dislike their actions or attitude. Your love, however, is still just as strong. We, as God’s children, are blessed with such unconditional love by our Father. (Luke 11:10-13) If God loves us ‘as is,’ how can we then, grant ourselves anything less than self-worth and self-acceptance?
Perfect Imperfection and Relationships
Relationships, as we know, are simply about how two people relate to one another. Putting two imperfect beings together will never yield a perfect coupling. It’s simply impossible. Instead we should choose to love others, our spouse included, the way God loves us – ‘as is.’ This is not to say we don’t demand respect from those we relate to. It means, simple, that even when our partner is falling short, we love them just the same.