Sunday, February 26, 2017
PRETENDING TO BE PERFECT HELPS NO ONE!
Matthew 5:48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
One of the biggest pitfalls in the life of a believer is the perceived need to appear perfect all the time. Another big danger comes when we begin to think we have attained some level of spirituality that makes us, somehow, better than most. I am flawed, I sin, and I will always have the propensity to sin BIG. Pretending that I am not helps no one and being real opens the door to relational discipleship.
This does not excuse my sin, nor does it negate my pursuit of holiness, it merely recognizes my need to avoid self righteousness. Clearly, Scripture calls me to pursue perfection.
Pretending to be perfect not only harms my witness, it also harms others around me. The ultimate goal for myself and any believer is consistency in what I say and do. If I claim to love God and others, my actions must indicate the same. Blatant hypocrisy and double mindedness are one of the greatest hindrances to the Great Commission.
The Scriptural call to perfection is not a call to a destination but a call to a lifetime pursuit. Romans 8:29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. Part of the Holy Spirit's ministry in the life of the believer is transformation.
Perfection comes when Christ calls us home, whether that should be at life's end or the rapture of the church. Until perfection comes, we are called to be real. Real with others and ourselves. Pretending to be holier or more perfected than I actually am is dangerous as it gives the enemy an opportunity to expose me as a fraud and ruins whatever testimony I may have had.
We certainly need to strive for holiness while being honest about our walk with God. Being honest about our struggles does not mean accepting our sin and excusing it by simply saying, "that's who I am." Being honest means admitting a problem and submitting to the will and transforming power of God. Being honest also means trusting someone to whom we can be accountable. We are not meant to walk this life alone, God made us for community and gave us each a unique role in the Body of Christ. Someone is relying on me to do my part as I am relying on others to do theirs.
The call to perfection does not require, nor expect us, to attain in this life. The call to perfection is a call to a life fully submitted to the will of God. Do not pretend to be better than you are and, at the same time, do not settle for a life of sin and struggle. Remember, though a righteous man falls seven times, he gets back up!