The Problem with Perfection
Don’t we all love for things to be perfect? Perfect weather, perfect hair, perfect home, perfect food, perfect kids, perfect spouse…
I think the desire for perfection is a large part of the reason so many people in our society are obsessed with social media – TV, blogs, Pinterest, online photo albums, etc. But the desire for perfection can be a dangerous trap if we’re not careful.
If we dwell on the desire for a perfect anything, we can easily become dissatisfied with the imperfect everything.
When we view social media and see everyone else’s best, we can feel like failures that our average doesn’t measure up. So we fret, we try harder, we become discouraged, and we give up. Then, to make ourselves feel better, we post a photo of the one thing about our lives that we want other people to see.
We’re careful to make sure that photo is a close-up so nobody can find out about our mess that surrounds the beauty.
This makes other people feel inadequate because they can see that their average doesn’t measure up to our best. So they fret, try harder, become discouraged, give up, and then post their own photo. Thus, the cycle continues.
I want to encourage you to stop worrying about projecting an image of perfection. Forget about Pinterest. Stop looking at everyone’s “perfect” vacation photos on Facebook if they make you feel bad. Skip the Hollywood movies.
And when we’re the ones who want to share things on our own social media? Let’s check our motives first. It is fun to share bits of our lives with others, but pretending that we have it all together can make people feel inadequate, so let’s share in moderation and consider the viewers before posting.
This life is a precious gift which is beautiful in every bit of its imperfect glory.
A simple dinner of baked chicken, green beans, and fresh watermelon is just as nutritious as a gourmet meal. Affordable stay-cations are more of a blessing to many families than elaborate week-long trips. Birthday cupcakes that are made with love are every bit as special as the most beautiful Pinterest-worthy creations.
The problem with perfection is that many of us exhaust ourselves chasing it when we should be spending our time on things that matter more – on the very things that can’t always been seen outwardly.
I do believe that God placed the desire for perfection in our hearts, because we long for a perfect Heaven.
We should look forward to the heavenly perfection, but let’s not let the desire for perfection overtake us on earth. We don’t need to become discouraged or give up because we don’t have the cleanest houses, the prettiest desserts, or the silkiest hair – we can choose to be thankful for what we do have and not focus on the rest.
“I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.” Philippians 4:11-12
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