Perfection was something I strived for. As the youngest of four kids, I felt I had big shoes to fill. So fill them, I tried. Playing multiple sports, studying hard to get straight A’s, working my nights away at Dairy Queen through high school. I thought I had it all figured out. Be perfect, and you’ll be loved. Or at least that’s what I thought.
But it turns out perfection does not equal love. Instead it can be suffocating, because when you fail or mess up (which you are bound to do), you might feel like you are no longer lovable. Who is going to love a mess-up, right? See the problem? It is so easy to get caught up in a works-based mentality, saturating yourself with good deeds and hard-work. I get it, babes. Good deeds and hard work are not wrong, but when we forget that we are loved by God who chose to love us before we did anything at all, we are putting our hope in the wrong thing. When our walls of good grades and perfect scores are torn down in a misfire of mistakes, what are we left with then?
The first time I screwed up and got myself mixed up in some pretty sticky sin, I thought I was the most unlovable person on the planet. I didn’t deserve grace or forgiveness or anything really; that’s what I was preaching to myself. But God whispered a different story, in the most tender voice, “Grace is enough for you.” And I believe He is probably whispering the same thing to you. So if you’re having trouble hearing Him over all the other voices, I’ll tell you the words I so badly needed to hear when I was drowning.
God loves you. And by “you,” I mean every fiber stitched together to form the skin you walk around in. He loves the “all-together-ness” you portray and your crazy hot mess self, hidden beneath every, “I’m okay.” He loves every ounce of blood rushing through your veins and every breath in your lungs, urging you to keep on breathing. So keep on breathing, even when you’re struggling through anxiety. Keep breathing even when your entire life comes crashing down in heaps.
God loves you, not because of what you have done or because you aced your last biology test. He loves you because of who He is, and because He created you, and He was glad to do so. Rest in that today. You are loved, no if’s, and’s, or but’s about it.
- by Jordan Konkler