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The Perfection Problem

It's always been a tendency of mine to lapse into perfectionist habits, but the grade-pressure of senior year has hardly improved the issue. With university applications up in the air and a real sense of urgency lacing school and marks, it's becoming harder and harder to put it all in the Lord's hands.

Naturally, that's just what Satan wants—and it's certainly not the first time he's caught me in this struggle. But as I find myself stressing over the pursuit of perfection, I'm once again reminded of that timeless conviction that whispers, Give it to God.

Otto Koning, a well-known Papua New Guinea missionary and the face of The Pineapple Story (check it out here—it's well worth the listen) focused almost exclusively on this principle in his candid audio series. Just like you and I, he was a human who battled fleshly tendencies in his quest to serve God more and more. The lessons that Otto had to learn were by no means simple or painless, but they strengthened his faith and taught him again and again to surrender all.

It's the 'all' part that gets me. Not some, not part—ALL. It's a difficult concept to reconcile with the human tendency to cling to what we have, as if we think it's really ours, that we really have some claim upon what we've been gifted by God. I'm as guilty of it as anyone else, but God has a way of pricking our hearts with the gentle reminders of what we're holding back, what we need to lay in his hands—including the pursuit of perfection.

If you're struggling with the perfection problem, you are not alone. The pressure to excel in all things, all the time, completely by our own strength, is a very real force in our world. But I hope you can hear the Lord whispering in your ear, as clearly and compellingly as He is in mine, and I pray that you and I will place our stress and struggles in His hands, and live more freely in our faith!

Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. ~1 Peter 5:7

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