For the Perfectionist Trying to Earn God’s Love

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I am a perfectionist in recovery. When I was in school, nothing made me happier than seeing an A+ on my paper, followed by endless accolades from my teacher on a job well done.

But even when I achieved the good grades and the praise from my mentors, nothing I did was enough. I felt as though there was some unseen level of perfection I wasn’t reaching. I avoided taking risks because I didn’t think I would be able to perform the task well.

My unrealistic expectations overflowed to others and left me feeling disappointed when they were unable to perform. Often I isolated myself because someone broke some unseen promise.

Slowly, I began to realize that perfection I held to so tightly was a myth.

When my perfectionist nature tells me nothing is good enough, God says, “My grace is sufficient.”

Nothing can separate me from his love. All that time I thought I was trying to earn his love, but through His grace I finally realized I can only boast because of his love.

Everything I do is to bring Him glory. Without His love, I am like a clanging cymbal. But because of His love, I am a redeemed perfectionist.

 

This post was written as part of the Five-Minute Friday link-up. A beautiful group of bold writers who meet every Friday to write about one word for five minutes flat. Today’s word was: nothing. Click the button below to learn more.

Five Minute Friday

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16 thoughts on “For the Perfectionist Trying to Earn God’s Love

  1. Hi, my name is Sherrey and I’m a perfectionist. Yes, in recovery. And you’ve painted the clearest picture of the me I knew growing up, in the working world, in my marriage and yes, even in my relationship with God. But I’ve made progress now that I’m in my 60s, and I’m so glad you recognize the perfectionist in you. It’s the only way to cope with the who we are, but knowing we are His makes all the difference in how we react. Thanks for sharing this intimate look at yourself. It takes courage!

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    • Yes it does, Sherrey! Thank you so much for stopping here today and for the encouragement. The more I understand God’s undeserved love, the more abundant my life is.

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  2. I love this. I still remember the summer i realized i could praise others for things that weren’t 100% perfect – and make them (and me!) happier – instead of reserving my praise for the BEST, most deserving things… LOL!

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  3. “My unrealistic expectations overflowed to others and left me feeling disappointed when they were unable to perform. Often I isolated myself because someone broke some unseen promise.” – YES!! Me too! I am so glad I learned this lesson, it has transformed my life.

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  4. I’m a perfectionist in recovery too. I never really connected my perfectionism to my avoidance of risk, but now that you say it, I see it very clearly. Realizing the sufficiency of God’s grace opens so many doors, and gives us the courage to do the things we previously were afraid to do.

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    • Yes, I have thought the same thing-soul sisters. πŸ˜‰ Always love hearing from you and that is so cool that that thought of the same verse in our FMF post.

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  5. I guess I got so excited that you described me so perfectly, I hit enter when I meant return! I wasted so much time trying to be perfect and missing so many things because of that fear. I still have those moments, but these days I am more and more likely to say and quick prayer and jump right in…all the while knowing that God’s got me and whatever the outcome – it will be the right outcome. Wise words Abby

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    • Lol- too funny. Yes, it is so liberating to just jump right in and not spend so much time worrying about the outcome. Thank you so much for your insight and kind words, Lisa.

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