Three, two, one! After a brutal week which could only prove to make going on vacation even more inviting, the day of departure had finally arrived. Over the last several weeks, I had purchased new outfits for the trip, slathered on self tanner lotion and even whitened my teeth (something you might expect from a dental hygienist). As we left our small town in the rearview mirror, I breathed a sigh of relief. How nice it would be to escape the daily grind, responsibilities and problems of life for a while. Time for some carefree existence!
Or not!! My husband realized on the first night that he had left behind the power cord for his CPAP breathing machine. Not good. That meant a near sleepless night for him to begin the trip with. Just when we thought we might have to make the four-hour drive back home to retrieve this cord, God provided and there was one available within a 90 mile detour from our ultimate destination. So what If I had to leave the Botanical Garden and my much anticipated photo shoot in the Butterfly House after only twenty minutes. Problem solved, back to vacation mode.
Not quite! On day two of what was supposed to be vacation perfection, I had a mishap in the shower. My left eye literally looks like Rocky Balboa after Apollo Creed had pounded on him in the first “Rocky” movie. And can I just say it is only getting worse as I look in the mirror on day three of our vacation. So here I sit with white teeth, some cute clothes, and this “shiner.” What I had imagined would be days of happy-go-lucky bliss have proved to be anything but that.
Perfection. Why do I still believe the myth? Whether it pertains to my life, my vacation, or my relationship with God, perfection is not a burden I should be shouldering. It is a robber of joy, a tool of Satan. In truth, I did not realize the power its grip still had on me until this vacation debacle. My life has been invaded by so many imperfect things that somewhere deep inside I evidently continue to search for that “sweet spot” where all is golden, even if just for a few days.
God’s promise for this is found in Ecclesiastes 3:ll which states, “He has made everything beautiful in its time.” Therein lies my answer! God’s plan for beauty in my life trumps my exhausting quest for perfection.
Silly me! I don’t have to go on vacation to grasp for a fleeting dose of perfection. I don’t have to have the perfect job, the perfect children or be the perfect Christian. I can choose to dwell in that “sweet spot” of God’s perfect love for me instead and rest in His promises. In Him alone there is beauty and perfection for every moment of everyday…perfect love, perfect grace, perfect peace, perfect joy.
As I return to my imperfect life and my imperfect vacation, I smile and praise God. I fix my eyes on Him, I seek His face and my perspective is once again centered in knowing that it’s not about me. And I praise Him for who He is and who I am in Him…perfectly saved and flawless in His eyes. Perfection in my world and my performance fade in the light of His presence. To God Be the Glory!
Make sure you check out Holley Gerth’s blog and her new book You’re Loved No Matter What: Freeing Your Heart from the Need to Be Perfect. Her inspired words will bathe you in the love and presence of our Heavenly Father. Check it out here!