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Tag Archives: Perfectionism

The Spelling Bee

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I am not holding a grudge.  Honestly.

I do, however, hold a memory in my head of the day I lost a spelling bee.

There was a stage, lots of chairs, and lots of excellent spellers.

I loved spelling bees – especially this one – you had to be special to get there.

You had to be a top speller from your grade at your elementary school – mine was 5th grade.

I don’t remember what I wore, I don’t remember being nervous, but I most certainly remember that a certain boy from another school and I were the last ones standing.

Perhaps we spelled a few words each before it happened, but it happened – I spelled my word incorrectly.

The real problem though was that he spelled it correctly.

The word was government, and just to be honest here?  It was on the 6th grade word list, which I never received to memorize.  So, yes, I blamed my teacher.

The funny thing about all this is, is that I remember that boy’s name.  Mostly because it was an unusual last name and actually kind of cool for a kid in our small town.  I thought his last name sounded like Tchaikovsky – the famous composer.

I learned this:

He won, I lost, and I was no longer a perfect speller.

No, I don’t hold grudges, but I hold on to perfection.  Most days I struggle with my imperfection.

I lose sight of a goal much easier to handle – I am not meant to be perfect, Christ is.

I am made perfect through Him and only through Him.

I am a firm believer that everything – even losing a 5th grade spelling bee – happens for a reason.

Perfection in this world is unreachable.  Holiness, humbleness, brokenness, thankfulness, etc. are possible and attainable.

Expanding our vocabulary is possible – with or without good spelling skills.

Receiving grace from God and spreading it around requires willingness, not perfection.

Accept His Grace, be willing, and spread it.

Drop perfection OFF as you walk across the stage and move forward with your life… Start now.

 

 
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Posted by on May 17, 2016 in Life, in general, Love

 

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Perfectly Weary

Dry lungs.  That’s how best I can describe them.  Deprived of oxygen or just plain lazy would also be fitting.  Dizziness, well, more like uncontrolled spinning, occurs in my head quite frequently.  Tired, in pain, barely breathing and somehow I’m getting the laundry done.  Somehow I’ll manage to cook dinner – I think.

Tea is steeping, Christmas music is playing and for the first time in 4 days it is quiet.  It feels like a major accomplishment to get to this moment today – a time to actually think and concentrate.  A time to do a few chores, and a take a few moments to collect myself and renew slightly before something or someone beckons me.

A slight reprieve, badly needed.  A greater reprieve, I pray, is one day closer.

I wasn’t always like this.  I remember only too well the days of boundless energy.  Early years of running and playing with complete abandon.  Standing back flips, front walkovers, and long hours of stretching, dancing, and twirling.  I write of those days and time stands still in my head.  I can still feel the pasty, sweaty chalk on my hands and clearly feel the hardwood gym floor under my bare feet.  I can picture all the gymnasiums I’ve ever romped and flipped around in.

The face of the my gym teacher opening the doors for us before school hours was a welcome sight.  Each day I left the house early in the cold and the dark to go practice in the gym.  Later, I proudly wore blistered hands to class, much to the shock of my fellow students.  They didn’t understand how much I loved those early morning workouts.

Pausing, I sip my tea, allowing the pain in my neck and arm to lessen.  Even writing is painful.

I have loved making quilts, mosaics, and all sorts of crafts over the years.  I used to love to clean house, make dinner, do yard work, and chase after kids.  It was all so tiresome, but when the end of the day arrived, I didn’t regret much.  It was accomplished with reckless abandon as well.  Pure energy and drive… perhaps with a little too much perfectionism added in.

Well, the truth is, I had and STILL have way too much perfectionism in my life.  I struggled with a perfectly ordered life and house and now I struggle – with a body that does not fulfill my mind’s idea of how it should function.

In my spiritual life, along the way, I have found the desire to meet God in all things – every situation I was in and with everyone I met.  That used to be so simple because I was looking outward.  Now I find myself desiring to rise above the trappings of my human flesh – above the physical, the mental, and the emotional ideals of perfection, to see where I am in God’s plan.  It’s not easy.  It’s a part of my spiritual journey that is taking longer than I desired, but I can only imagine how wonderful the end results are going to be when God is finished with this part of His plan for my life.

I imagine when I look back upon this physically painful time it will diminish in intensity because of the enormity of what God will have accomplished.  In the meantime, my prayer life is being renewed and scripture is once again at the forefront of my day.  I think He has me right where He wants me, and today, I hope I make Him smile.

Philippians 4:12 & 13

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Psalm 121:1,2

I lift up my eyes to the hills – where does my help come from?  My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2012 in Life, in general

 

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