See I'm a perfectionist and if there is one thing I learned it's that building gingerbread houses is a perfectionists worst nightmare. When the idea first popped into my head at the store it sounded great, I bought one of those little kits and the picture on the front looked beautiful and I thought to myself "I can totally do that, how hard can it be.? Well let me tell you its not as easy as it looks. The entire time it was a disaster. The walls kept falling in, the icing kept drying up before we could get the candy on. The whole time I kept glancing at the beautiful example on the front of the box and trying desperately to make mine similar, to just try and measure up even a little. That perfectionist attitude I mentioned before kept rearing its ugly head and I got so frustrated. It sounds ridiculous I mean "who cares" it's a little gingerbread house meant to give us something to do as a family right? But for me I felt like a failure, I felt like I wasn't good enough, why didn't mine look like the box? I felt like everyone else makes beautiful gingerbread houses and bakes varieties of Christmas goodies but I can't. I felt like I never measure up and will never been good enough, skinny enough, smart enough or "together enough."
Growing up I have always struggled with this fear of rejection and failure. When I was 9 my mom divorced my father. Although hard for my little mind to grasp at the time he was an alcoholic man who would get angry and violent towards my mother when he had too much to drink and he chose the alcohol over us and walked away from 3 little girls. Since then he has walked in and out of our lives. We have given him chance after chance and although I miss having my dad in my life it's more the concept of a dad and not the reality of the man my dad is. As a mother now though I struggle with trying to understand how a father could just walk away from his girls, "weren't we enough, why wasn't he proud of us." As I see my husband love our daughter Macie with this unconditional smitten love I find myself even more puzzled.
Even though I know nothing I did caused my dad to walk away it's placed this unrealistic expectation and need to be perfect on my life. Sometimes I think about how I'm terrified that I will never measure up as a wife, mother, and friend. The expectations for perfection that I place on myself are beyond anything I could ever obtain in this life but yet I continually work towards it. The expectations I place on myself are bogus and unrealistic and although I try to meet them I would never expect someone else to meet them or be disappointed when they unsurprisingly failed but I would beat myself up for sure. I don't do things just to get them done I either do every task with my whole heart beyond 100%, or I don't do them. In my head I fail too often but realistically could never obtain half the goals I set because I'm human not superhuman.
As my mind starts to wander down this destructive path an alarm goes off overhead warning me of the enemies schemes and then I hear the loving voice of Christ whisper "you are more than enough; you are my beloved, beautiful, chosen, talented, daughter and although in this world you are far from perfect your imperfections are exactly what allows you to depend on my omnipotence." You see the picture on the front of the gingerbread house kit is done by professionals, people trained and dedicated to the art of building and perfecting that structure to be flawless and beautiful. Its meant to draw you in and inspire you but not to defeat you. Does this sound familiar to anyone else? I know I look around at other wives, mothers, women at church and think "if only I could be like......."
I see myself as less than, never quite meeting the status quot. This perfectionist attitude that can sometimes be a strength and help drive me to want greatness for my life can also be my biggest weakness and make me feel like such a failure. What I'm realizing though is that not one single task, talent, success or strength in this life determines my worth in the eyes of Christ. Although my earthly father has failed me my heavenly father treasures and adores me. Because God loves us more than we could ever imagine He sent His only Son to be mocked, beaten and killed so that we could spend eternity in His presence. To Christ we are breathtaking, desirable, precious and enough. There is nothing in this life that can ever separate us from His love. "Relax in My presence, knowing that nothing can separate you from My Love. The worst-case scenario in your life-that I might stop loving you-is not even in the realm of possibility. So rejoice that you don't have to perform well enough to earn My Love, or to keep it. This Love is a pure gift, flowing out of My own own perfect righteousness. It secures your connection to Me-your Savior-for all eternity" Sarah Young.
Deuteronomy 14:2 "For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. Out of all the peoples on the face of the earth, the Lord has chosen you to be his treasured possession."
Ephesians 3:17-19 "So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God."