untangled perfection

I woke up with my hair and guts all in a buch.  Today was the day.  I trudged toward my laptop and the conference prep work I’d been putting off for weeks.

I didn’t even know the retreat participants, but something inside me was all wound up wanting to create THE presentation.  I sat at the keyboard, fingers paralyzed.

Just how do you start a. . . world-changing, earth-shattering, life-altering, super-de-duper, look how awesome she is. . . presentation?

You don’t.

I fumbled through an unproductive morning and debated about skipping lunch to gain lost time.  Luckily, I looked up at my summer bucket list sticky note and read, “Eat outside,” so I shut my laptop, grabbed a sandwich, and headed out to the deck with my Esther Bible study homework in hand.

Words jumped from the page and landed squarely in my muddled guts:

“Haman’s pursuit of greatness made him a shameless opportunist.  For others, the temptation is to become a perfectionist.  When Fraser was struggling with her first book that ‘had to be great,’ a psychologist posed an intriguing question: ‘You can write a good book, can’t you’  Paraphrased: Do you have to do something great?  Can you be happy to do something really good?  Think about it, Sister.  Couldn’t the craving to do something great keep us from doing something good. . . Living to be great will prove at least empty and maybe even deadly. . . What if we awakened to what a dream-killer perfectionism is?  To how pitifully small and unworthy a goal personal greatness is?  Every one of us who embraces the glory of God as our purpose will end up doing great things precisely because we do God-things.”

God has a way of helping me to find my way to a sandwich on the deck when I want to remain firmly planted in my MacBook, anchored by to-do lists and grossly misdirected goals.  I’m thankful for a God’s who’s in the business of turning me outward, untangling these guts over and over again.

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