Or should I say I’m a “Perfection-ista?”
I really wish I could say I’m a “reformed” perfectionist. But it’s something I struggle with on a daily basis:
- when I burn dinner.
- when I forgot to pay that bill on time.
- when company comes and my house is a disaster.
- when I find a typo in something I posted online months ago.
- when I don’t meet deadlines I placed on myself that are totally arbitrary and no one really cares about it but me.
1. Slack for others. But none for me, thank you very much.
I have to admit that while I do expect “excellence” from others (really, shouldn’t we try to do our best?), I really take it up a notch – or 10 – when it comes time to evaluate my own performance. Yes, the same person who actually chased Daughter around the room with a broom because her demands for herself were too high suffers from the same perfectionist malady. I’ve recently found myself steeping in a pot of not-so-fragrant negativity about myself.
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your bodies.”
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
2. Negative Nellie’s grumblings don’t do much to honor God.
Who wants to listen to someone beat themselves up constantly. Well, no one. And I know that. So I kinda managed to keep my running commentary to myself most of the time. But I saw it leaking out. It’s like this lake I know. I grew up in SW Oklahoma near Lake Altus-Lugert. It’s been dead. I mean really dead. This March it was at 6% capacity. Yep, only 6%. SW Oklahoma was in severe drought for many years, and the lake was just GONE. (Nothing going in. You follow?) Well, this May – yes, in just 1 month – it rained so much that they had to open the flood gates at the dam! That was God at work!!
I went by the dam the last time I was visiting Mom. The gates were closed, but the contents of the lake were overflowing the spillway and leaking through the closed gates. So great was the pressure behind them – they needed a release.
So, what exactly is it that I want overflowing out of me?
3. I lost focus
Instead of focusing on my extra poundage or my chocolate addiction or my cluttered living room, I need to have other things swirling through my head:
“whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8
“Meditate on” means more than just think about. It’s letting something marinate in your head. This is one of the wonderful things about Faithart. If you spend an hour working on art for a scripture or a lesson, then you are meditating on what that means.
But, when we focus on the waves around us – like Peter did when invited to walk on water – we will begin to sink. And the wrong things will spill out. But just imagine what could flow from us if we will just set our eyes on the Creator. The overflow could be deafening.
Make sure your sound is turned up, and listen to the spillway from the base of the dam.
My art today concludes my deconstructed flag series for the month. This time I used a chevron stencil and only hinted of my “wonky stripes” homemade stencil at the bottom. I did this because my perfectionist tendencies tend to make me feel all jagged and snarly. I am clearly a work in progress (WIP), and thankfully, God will never give up on me. Or on you. I added one of my favorite mini file folders and labelled it “My Failures” since I do seem to keep a running list in my head.
Do you have perfectionist proclivities? Feel free to share below. We’re all in this together!by