Perfection is one thing I used to hate. I used to hate getting into details because I always looking into the bigger picture, I used to hate the fact when someone approaches me and tell me that my work is lacking despite I did all the things I could do because I didn’t see this and all of that and gave me a sermon all throughout.
Where was I coming from? I’m coming from my dominant self who wants to do the job as possible. Nothing to brag about but being I’ve been a performer as an employee not because my work is perfect, but with my desire and eagerness to finish my job ahead of the deadline, but it’s not always the case. Hehe.
Today I want to share some of my personal reflections. As I was reading my Bible this morning, a verse from the Scriptures hit me hard. It says, “Be ye perfect, as your Father in heaven is perfect.”
Ohh, wait a minute. There’s no perfect person except the Person of Jesus Christ. Then how can someone like me and you to be perfect? Well, I know some Christians will tell me, “Dhenn it is by the grace of God!” But what is grace for an ordinary person? How does it work?
I also find a few good people seems to think about our Lord’s words, “be perfect” as sort of, “Unless you are perfect, I will not come to help you.” In that case, we are mere mortals and our position in God is forever hopeless.
I Surrender, I Will Yield
5 years ago, it was Sunday evening when I fell on my knees inside my room because God was there. I felt Him, I was trembling in fear, I was crying for help.
“I surrender!” I exclaimed. If you have Christian friends, they often tell you, “Surrender your life to Jesus.” But what does it mean?
Surrendering to the lordship of Christ often means surrendering all of your life, including your relationships, possessions, desires, and dreams. But that doesn’t mean He wants all of that, He doesn’t need that because He wants only you, nothing less.
Our Lord is not a kill joy Master. He gave us the free will to do everything we want. But I found something more profound in this area of surrender.
He will come to help us to be perfect
I think the moment Jesus ordered us to be perfect, he doesn’t want us to be perfect as in now na.
It’s impossible for a mere mortal driven by fear, greed, selfishness, hopelessness, and pity.
Like other religious worldviews, we have today and even some “so-called” Christians are teaching self-denial, emptying yourself, positive psychology, but I think all of that is good but cannot give an everlasting peace within us.
You may find yourself doing sort of ceremonies and rituals, and religious worship but you may find your inner-self is starting to get angry and angrier each day like a prisoner wanted to get out of the jail because you think you don’t deserve it. You want to be good to please other people. Woe to you if it happened to you. A criminal is much closer to God than you.
What Jesus meant by that, I think is like this: “If you surrender and let me in, the only help I can give you is to help you to become perfect. You may want to improve your patience, you may want to be good to others, you may want to live a good life or only healing from the sins you were ashamed of but I will give you nothing less.”
Okay, let me explain in a more vivid way.
A Dental Procedure
When I was a child, I used to love candies. As a result, I often had a toothache. When I grew up, my teeth wasn’t that perfectly align. I look ugly every time I smile, so in order for me to hide that ugly smile, you might often see my old pictures having a serious face.
That’s when my mom asked me to inquire for braces. A piece of material that can align my teeth perfectly for a shorter amount of time.
The time my dentist put on the braces, err it was painful. She then she gave me pain relievers to ease it. But she doesn’t stop there. She told me to visit her every month to clean my teeth and check it often to make sure the each tooth is moving.
God is like a dentist if we let Him in. If my dentist only stopped after putting on the braces to my teeth, probably nothing will ever change. The change only happens the time I allowed her to cure me, to let her follow me up and visit her often.
I think God operates us like a dentist also. Perhaps an architect, engineer, a software developer, a sales man, a project manager, etc. In which these jobs don’t stop until their buildings, software or product meet its perfect condition. Like God, He doesn’t stop until He sees you as perfect and blameless ONLY THEN IF YOU SURRENDER AND LET HIM INTO YOUR LIFE.
Wait a minute there is a cost? Yes. The dental procedure has a cost, building a structure has a cost. And of course being perfect has a cost as well.
Jesus warned people to count the cost before letting Him into their lives. In my view of thinking, I think if I were Jesus, I would say, “Make no mistakes, if you let me in, I will make you perfect.”
So what is the cost? Well here’s what I think the cost. I think Jesus meant this way, “Well you have the freedom to push me away and I will never change you but if you let me do so, I will make you perfect though it will make you suffer that may cost your life, I will purify you from your sins and it may cost you after death. I will make your heart perfect, though it may cost you many heartaches. Whatever it cost, I will never rest, I will never stop nor let you rest, until you are literally perfect, until my Father can say without any doubts and reservation that He is well pleased with you.”
But of course, it is not going to be an instant because I believe that perfection is progression.
I think the first step of being made into perfection is allowing the person of Jesus Christ to shape you.
I’ve been hearing a bunch of quotes and sayings that was intended to motivate others by merely saying “You are perfectly made by God.” Well, while nothing’s bad about it but for me, it’s just an attempt of feeding one’s prideful heart.
In the Bible, no one is made perfect except Christ. Well, Adam and Eve were made perfect because they are made in the image of God but after they have sinned, the future of all humanity after them wasn’t made in the image of God anymore. All of us and the entire next generation were made in the image of Adam and Eve, tainted by sin.
That’s why you and I cannot claim that we are created in the image of God. We and the rest of humanity were made by Adam and Eve. We don’t possess the same will and interest that God has. We maybe “look like” God but not totally like God because His image is holy, perfect, and blameless.
Now, how God can bring us back to our original image just ask like the image of the Son of God? Through Jesus Christ. Like what I previously said, it takes the Person of Christ to mold us back to our original image. But that won’t happen until we allow Him to do it.
For example, I am your friend. Of course, because I am your friend, you allowed me to a certain degree to have a share in your life. Perhaps you can allow me to meet your family, you can open up to me or share stories you’ve never told to others. Would you do that to a stranger? Or an acquaintance? Or a fan? Of course not. That’s why Jesus wants to have a relationship with you first. He wants you to trust him fully.
And if you trust him completely. Then He will start to mold you. It’s like a gold bar being bent, hammered and shape into one’s desired output. It’s going to be painful at some point but it’s definitely worth it.
Just imagine the pain of having your braces, you trust your dentist that she will do everything to make your teeth perfect. But of course, it will be painful. Sometimes it’s hard to eat.
God rarely uses people who do not allow Him to mold them first. Of course, God can use you anytime, but God often uses people during while He molds them.
It’s like He is testing you. “How long will my child put his trust on me? Let me use him for a little mission I have for him.”
I remember the time when I wanted to go to missions. That didn’t happen very quickly. God used me first to give to the missions. When I say give, not only my time to pray, my time to help missionaries but also to support them financially.
I don’t know about you. But God for sure wants to use you while He is in the process of molding you. Molding you is not an easy process, it takes your entire life.
You may want to skip this part and may say “God can still mold me and use somebody. ” Alright fine, but without allowing Him to use you for His purpose, you will never be perfect.
Of course, sending comes next.
God won’t send you if He sees it is not yet good for you. C.S Lewis once said, “God keeps no one waiting unless He sees that it is good for him.”
I think God rarely sends people without a weapon, to begin with. He makes sure that the person he called was ready, and he was ensuring it through the process of molding and using him at the same time.
When was the last time your boss or colleagues treat you badly? How did you respond to them?
When was the last time you serve others, do you serve because you want your leaders to see you that are serving or they have just told you to serve and you want them to be proud of you, or you want people to recognize that you have a good voice and a clever mind, or you serve because you only want to help them carrying out the task?
That’s where God will evaluate your heart. I think if He is kind of a sort like me who have a checklist, He will have a heart-readiness checklist.
Sending is one of the most exciting parts that God has for you and me. As they said, it is life changing. Yes, definitely! You’ll see more the heart of God not for your church only, not for your family only but His heart for all humanity.
Imagine a God who restrained Himself in one planet. Of all the planets in the universe, why on us? Perhaps there maybe another living species outside our universe, who knows? The Bible only tells about how the earth begins and how it will end gloriously.
A God who restrained Himself to us, humans that He gave so much important than anything else.
Why is He doing that? It is because…
For His Glory
In the beginning was God. Everything He created was for Him. If that’s the case then probably our God is a sort of lunatic and sort of a selfish childish god who created us so that He has a toy to play with.
Of course, that was not the case. Imagine our Lord as an artist. We are His masterpiece and He was so obsessed with it and He will do everything to make us perfect and will wait on us until we become like little Christ.He created us for His own pleasure.
“And no lie was found in their mouth, they are blameless.” Revelation 14:15
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