"We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God." - (2 Corinthians 3:4-5 NLT)
Thoughts for Today
Perfectionism is an issue for many Christians. Even though we know we became Christians by faith in Christ, not by our works, we sometimes continue to impose the weight of rules and regulations on ourselves. We set standards for ourselves and require perfect adherence to those standards. But measuring ourselves by extreme rules and definitions destroys hope. Even when we do something with 99.9 percent perfection, we still see ourselves as defective because of the .1 percent imperfection.
The result? Feelings of inadequacy, failure, worthlessness. Guilt. Self-condemnation. A common response to all this is, "Since I cannot possibly do it 100 percent right, I will not do it at all.
Consider this …
When we measure ourselves by those around us or by our own need to be perfect, we may not even try to succeed. All God asks is that we try to do something with our abilities and resources. When we allow ourselves the option of just making moderate progress, we will find the courage to grow in our walk with Jesus and in trusting him to help us do those things he has called us to do.
Have you given up in some area of your life? Consider today's scripture. None of us are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God. We can only succeed as we stop demanding perfection from ourselves and begin relying on Jesus to help us accomplish what he wants us to do.
Father, I fell into the trap of trying to do things on my own and demanding perfection from myself. But I have failed - and I have given up. Please forgive me for trusting myself instead of Jesus. I know that I am not qualified to do anything on my own . . . but that I can do all things through Jesus. In his name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …Seeing Yourself in God's Image: Overcoming Anorexia and Bulimia by Martha Homme, MA, LPC. Written by a counselor with experience helping those with eating disorders, this study is born from her own struggles in adolescence. The group challenges members to find their identity in Christ as they overcome this difficult struggle. This guide offers understanding of distorted body image, denial, and the family systems influence. It also explains how to break free of social pressures and how to restore the temple and tie the recovery process together. A companion booklet Seeing Your Loved One in God's Image, can be used as a quick reference guide dealing with issues associated with eating disorders. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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