Messages from above.
I have a tendancy to overanalyse life and therefore I overstress. I put so much weight on things going “just-so” that when they don’t go that way, I feel like my life is crumbling in a heap around me.
Perfectionism is what they call it. I call it a day in the life of Bree.
I wish I could tell you what event caused this necessity to be in control of making sure that every detail is carried through with pinpoint accuracy. I wish I could tell you that I had an inkling of how it all began so you could sit me down and help me snap out of it.
I wish it I could look back and say that it hasn’t shaped the path of my life.
But recently I’ve been hearing story after countless story telling me that I’m not alone. There are other perfectionists out there. There are other habitual planners and detail critiquers. I’m not just a party of one.
And the messages from above that I’ve been receiving is this…
And so as I read a recent message from one of the pastors on staff, the wind was let out of my sails. Not because I knew the content before the congregation, but because it pierced its way through the blockade that my perfectionism has established over the years, keeping out external forces.
The sermon focused on the message from Daniel 2 and 3. It’s a familiar story, about the friends of Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego who were cast into a fiery furnace by the evil king, Nebuchadnezzar (try fingerspelling those, whew!) because they would not bow down and worship him and the 90 foot idol he had created, even after they had done what he had asked in interpreting his dreams.
But Pastor Tim didn’t stop with this story, he took it a step further and called us out, saying that sometimes we’re like the evil king, not being satisfied with what we have and asking for more proof, more evidence, and more of what our heart desires before we allow the will of God to reign in our lives.
“We’ve got a plan for our life. In fact, we’ve got a great big plan, like a 90 foot idol of a plan, and we say, “God, if you will just give me the gold that I need, then I can get it built.”
We think, “Come on God, it’s not hard. If you give me the husband that I want, the wife that I want, the children that I want, the job that I want, the money that I want, the house that I want. If you just give me the gold that I need to build the idol of ‘my life’, well then maybe I will trust you.”
You see it’s all about us.
We need to pray that God would humble us, like he humbled Nebuchadnezzar so that we can finally see that it’s not about us. It’s about the Living God and the glory of His name.
My heart is far from being cured from the disease of perfectionism. No doubt I will struggle with relinquishing control for years to come. So just as much as I am writing this message to share with you, I am writing it for my future self to revisit.
It’s a reminder of what is possible through the power of God. If He could change the heart of an evil king in the days of old, He surely can change my perfection-seeking ways to that of His own.