One of society’s toughest problems is that everything is made a competition. The delusion of perfection that we must be the most fit, to have the biggest house, to have the cookie-cutter family, or to buy into the latest trend.
This isn’t a new concept. It’s not a new struggle. Generation after generation, people deal with these same root problems. It’s just on a grander scale. We now have social media to put our life out there for the world to see.
Surely no one must be able to understand the shame that you feel. Especially when stuffing your face with potato chips, breads, or other tasty carbs. It just seems that everyone else is working out, eating healthy, and posting their amazing progress.
Oh wait, that’s me. Secretly stuffing my face while posting workout progress pictures. Also wondering if I’ll ever be that size or shape again.
Surely no one must be able to understand the ridicule that you feel. Especially when you have to explain that you don’t have enough finances. Whether to buy another product from someone’s party invite. Whether having the ability to lavish your child with the best toys and clothes. Whether turning a friend down from a dinner invite.
Oh wait, that’s me.. from a single-income family trying to make the best of our financial situation. While falling into the trap of the latest trend for clothes, books, jewelry, makeup, fitness resources, etc.
Surely no one must be able to understand the hurt that’s scarred from abuse that you’ve felt. Especially when you put a smile on your face for the world to see. ‘I’m fine.’, ‘Everything is well.’ Or is it?
Oh wait, that’s me.. I truly have been there. That’s another whole story. And while most days are well, there are those occasional days of distress.
Surely no one must be able to understand the doubt that you feel. Especially when you make a decision that goes against the majority of society. Whether in terms of parenting, political issues, speaking out about God, or some other hot topic.
Oh wait, that’s me. I have made choices for my child that even my spouse, parents, friends, and/or society disagrees with.
You see friends, you’re not alone. Many of us suffer from these feelings. In fact, Jesus who is made perfect by way of God (Hebrews 5:8-9) also suffered from these very struggles. After all, He took on human form (Philippians 2:7) and flesh without God’s strength is weak (Matthew 26:41).
Jesus felt shame. The night that He was betrayed and arrested, He was brought before the high council. He was charged for making claims that He was the Son of God, the Messiah. Jesus did not deny the claim. As a result, the crowd jeered, spit on Him, and beat Him with their fists.- Matthew 26:47-67 (NLT)
Jesus felt ridicule. Before the Crucifixion, Jesus was mocked by the governor’s soldiers. They taunted Him for professing to be the King of Jews. They made a crown out of thorns and forced it into His head. They took off His clothes and covered Him in a scarlet robe. They gave Him a reed stick to resemble a scepter.- Matthew 27:27-31 (NLT)
Jesus felt abused. Not only was He beaten, He carried the weight of His own cross. Upon arriving to Golgotha, the soldiers drove stakes into Jesus’ hands and feet to nail Him to His cross. He also experienced verbal abuse as they spoke blasphemy toward Him.- Matthew 27:32-44 (NLT)
Jesus felt doubt. He was on the cross at noon when darkness overcame the land. After a grueling 3 hours, Jesus cried aloud to God. He asked His Father, “Why have you abandoned me?” before breathing His last breath.- Matthew 27:45-55 (NLT)
You see, my dear friends, Jesus was exposed for us. He became broken. His body was poured out. He bore all those things that we’ve suffered- to the highest extreme.
We should be mindful of, but not manipulated by, our feelings. We must not fall into the delusion of perfection. Furthermore, we shouldn’t let a tough problem or harmful experience determine our self worth.
I’m not asking you to expose your secrets with me or to the world. Just with Jesus- being broken, poured out, and thanking Him for baring it all. You will find that he understands. He will show you the way to be made perfect by way of Him.
“For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.”- Hebrews 10:14 (ESV)