Today I’d like to continue in the series of articles we’re working through together called “Pursuit of Perfection.” Today’s topic is about understanding why we desire perfection at all. Each of us does have this innate desire within us. It’s how we choose to use or ignore this innate which is a big determining factor in how our lives will go.
Recap of our Journey Thus Far:
- This journey began with the posing of the question, “If perfection is impossible, why would Jesus command it?” and then writing an article on understanding Jesus’ command to be perfect in which we dove into the meaning behind the command, as well as reviewed some theological rebuttals to this command and explored them more deeply to seek the full truth. Click here to read that article.
- Next, we officially opened up this series of articles in “part one” of this article series, where we dove into the Bible and other tools to come up with a proper working Biblical definition of perfection. In this article, we concluded that the only way to achieve our own version of Biblical Perfection was to fully submit to God, receive the Holy Spirit, and through the obedience to and by the leadership of the Holy Spirit, we will each be led into the purpose for our lives that God intends. Upon completing our purpose, we will have achieved a similar perfection to that of Jesus, when he gave his life on the cross. Click here to read part one of the series.
If you haven’t yet read the two prior articles that led to this one, I recommend doing so, because it will be a far better context than I can provide in this article.
This article is a bit longer than most of my articles. I ask that you read it all the way through. We have to cover some fundamental ideas before we can properly answer the question at hand.
Overview of Today’s Topic: Why We Desire Perfection
Let’s start with the Bible verse that is the basis for this article in Luke 14:28-30:
‘For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it — lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish’? ‘ Luke 14:28-30
Now, the main point of what Jesus is saying here, is that we should calculate the costs of the journey before we start on the journey. We will get to that in a future article in this series, perhaps even next. But Jesus actually asks which of us who are “intending to build a tower”, does not first calculate the costs. And so before we discuss the costs of pursuing perfection, we must first cover the “why should I even pursue perfection?” This is the topic that we’ll dive into today.
Given my entrepreneurial sales & marketing background, my mind immediately jumped to doing some cheesy “sales pitch” for God with a cost/benefit analysis. But doing so, in my opinion, would be an affront to God because He and His ways of living are not some cheap product or service, that needs to be sold to you so that you can give God what He wants (your commitment) and you’ll receive what you want (insert your wants and desires here).
Now, God does promise us that He will give us the desires of our heart (Psalms 37:4). He also promises to take care of all of your needs (Matthew 6:25-33; Phillipians 4:19). He even says that anything you ask for you will receive (Matthew 7:7).
In order to receive these gifts though, God has prerequisites, namely that we obey the first and most important command to “Love the Lord [our] God with all our heart, all our mind, and all our soul.” And since we learned that to love God, means to obey Him in our previous articles, this means that a prerequisite to the promises of God is to obey Him.
How can we obey God? By learning his principles found in the Bible, by accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior, repenting of doing things our own way, and receiving the Holy Spirit, who will guide us into all Truth and help us along our life’s journey to obey God.
Now, tying this all back to the question of our article today, we get to the question of why we should desire perfection. In a nutshell, the reason for this is genuinely so that your life and your joy may be complete. We all have an innate desire within us to fulfill a purpose, that we were given by God, at the beginning of time.
Some of us may choose to ignore this or drown it out with other things, that isn’t our actual purpose, but the truth of the matter is that if any of us are being honest with ourselves, and if we aren’t living in line with what our purpose is, there is something inside of you that is continually seeking “more” in order to fulfill a desire that only the fulfillment of God’s purpose can fill in your life.
To understand why this is, we have to first understand the origin, of life and the universe that we were born into…
Who is God, Who Are You & Why Does it Matter?
A Brief Explanation of Who God Is
God is the creator of all things throughout all of time. God is an eternal being and so, therefore, He operates outside of time. God first created you as a spirit being which is eternal and was made in His image (Genesis 1:27). Later the physical man was created by Yahweh in (Genesis 2:7).
IMPORTANT NOTE: The purposes of both the spiritual man (Genesis 1:26) and physical man (2:5) were determined before each was created.
Because God is the only one that knows that beginning from the end (Isaiah 46:10), and because he had to know how to achieve the end He desires at the beginning, He set all of his plans for the world, principles by which the world will operate, and purposes for our lives at the foundation of time.
Think about that for a moment…God had to pre-plan and pre-create every single unique characteristic of each and every person that he would create so that it would all work according to His purpose. Without doing this, God would not be able to achieve His end.
I know that when I was younger, there were many things that I didn’t appreciate about myself, but just this fact alone means that God had to take extra special care to create each and every one of us exactly as we are and if we weren’t the way that we are…God wouldn’t be able to achieve His perfect ending.
When this was first revealed to me, I really had to take a step back and ask God to forgive me. My rejection of myself, the unchangeable things about myself and my life, was a direct rejection of God’s own design.
Know this: God loves you and needs you enough, that he created you wonderfully unique, just the way that you are, and without you being created exactly as you are, in the exact time that you are, with the exact family that you are in (good or bad), God can’t achieve his purpose, either for your life or for the world’s. You’re that important to God. You’re that loved by God.
A Brief Explanation of Who You Are In Relationship to God
To reiterate, each and every one of us that lives today will live in the future, or has lived in the past is a creation of God. Each of us was designed for a specific period of time, with specific characteristics (physical features, mental capacity, emotional capacity, spiritual gifts, etc.), to accomplish a specific purpose in our lives, that would help God achieve His ultimate purpose for the world that we live in.
Each of us is also living in a world that operates based on the universal principles that God created for the world, at the beginning of time. These laws are applied equally to those that do follow God and those that do not follow God. In other words, there is no special treatment under these universal principles for ANYONE, they just are. Just like you were specifically designed for your purpose and uniquely designed to help God achieve His purpose, these principles too were specifically designed to help God achieve His purpose for His plan and His purpose for your life.
They are unchanging, they are the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow – forever. If they were changing, it would change God’s timeline and he couldn’t achieve His purpose, or yours.
How All of This Applies to Our Lives
It is through your unique characteristics, situations, families, time-period, AND the universal application of God’s universal principles across all of these variables, that God will carry out both His purpose and our purpose.
The Bible is a reflection of the explanation of these principles (the law), and the application of these principles (the historical books and the prophets), and the re-iteration/fulfillment of these principles through the life of Jesus Christ.
Why We Therefore Desire Perfection
Since this is true, this means that the desire we have deep within us, to fulfill our purpose is innate. When we are off track with either the direction of our lives, God’s principles guide us back to Him and His ways through consequences.
These consequences aren’t meant to harm you, rather they are mean to lead you to the only conclusion that is true. And that truth is that, the only way you’ll ever find fulfillment is through operating in alignment with God’s principles and by fulfilling the two greatest commands of God to “Love the Lord your God, with all your heart, all your mind, and all your soul” and to “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Again, since God operates outside of time, he has time to allow us to use our free will to come to this conclusion through our own devices. I can certainly tell you that a good bit of my life was coming to this conclusion the hard way. But God never left me, His principles always remained true and fair, and as a result of this, God eventually led me back to Himself.
Where there was ignorance, he shed light and brought (and is bringing) knowledge of His principles. Along the way, as God reveals more of Himself and His principles to me, I learn more about how they operate. Having learned the hard way of my own fruition many times, God has also given me a deeper desire to know His principles, and so I’ve been diving into understanding them more and more.
Each time that God reveals a new portion of Himself to me, it brings understanding to a lot of the things that had previously confused me before, and this has helped bring me joy and happiness because I can avoid making the same mistakes, and walk further in God’s knowledge which “leads me by still waters.” Just as God’s Holy Spirit helps me along the way too.
Our desire for the fulfillment of our God-given purpose is an innate feature of God’s design. We have the desire because we were created for a specific purpose. When we operate outside of this purpose, and live to our own devices, God gently (and sometimes not so gently) nudges us back in the right direction through the universal application of His principles.
Now, God does give us the free will to choose how we want to live our lives. We can choose to live according to His principles and be led by still waters. Or we can choose to do what I did for many years and do things of our own fruition, following our own carnal desires. To me, now that I understand it more clearly, it’s not really a choice worth making. One leads to pain and a lack of fulfillment. The other (God’s way) leads to peace, prosperity, and completeness that can only be obtained by a singular focus on God’s purpose for our lives.
My friends, it is my hope and prayer that you will make that decision for yourself. Having lived on both sides of the coin, and certainly occasionally still hitting roadblocks along the way in my own journey, I can tell you that God has personally completely changed my life for the better. I used to be anxious, worried, fearful, angry, addicted to finding different ways to fill my time and dull my senses.
God has taken all of that and has delivered on every promise He has ever made to me. I can honestly say that compared to where I was living before, I would be a fool to go back. God has delivered me from fear, from self-doubt, from my anger and bitterness. I pray that you would receive this too.
If you haven’t before, and would like to make your own personal commitment to God, all you have to do is say the below prayer. Once you have completed this prayer, you will be on your way towards peace that is beyond your wildest imagination.
“God in heaven, I need you.
I repent of doing things my own way and ask that you would forgive me today.
I believe that your son Jesus died, and he rose from the grave, for the forgiveness of my sins and I ask that you would cover me with the blood of Jesus for the forgiveness of my sins.
Today, I am committing the rest of my life to following your way, that you revealed through your son Jesus. Father please come into my life, renew my spirit, and teach me your ways so that I may walk with you in relationship.
Holy Spirit, please direct the steps of my path and lead me into all truth.
Not only for the promise of eternal salvation, but to bring your Kingdom glory on earth through my life which you have given me.
Thank you Father for creating a way, thank you for your love.
I ask this of you in Jesus’ name – Amen.”
If you prayed that prayer today, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d like to rejoice with you, pray for you, and see if there is anything that I can do to help you on your journey.
If you have made that decision previously, and today this has brought you to a place where you’re ready to fully commit on a deeper level to the purpose of God for your life, congratulations. Please send me an email so that I can pray for you on your journey.