"For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead..." Romans 1:20

Monday, April 16, 2012

Perfectionism

This is me:
Calling this black:
That's the imagery that came to me this morning as I wrote in my journal.  Just in case there is someone out there who's never heard the expression "that's like the pot calling the kettle black" I'll explain.  It's believed to first be used in a 1620 translation of "Don Quixote" and refers to a criticism that could apply to the person doing the criticizing.  I was journaling about some comments (ok, criticisms) I'd made to two of my adult sons this weekend and wondering why I'd done it.  I don't like the little subtle digs that escape my mouth sometimes and realized I had to get to the root of them if I was ever going to be free of voicing them.  So I continued writing down my thoughts and realized the things I was critical of were things I felt had been my duty to teach them and had obviously failed at doing so.  Then an incident came to mind where I'd also been critical of something someone else had failed to do.  Here I was criticizing this other person for their failure when I had just acknowledged my own failure.  Hence the pot and kettle popping into my mind.


Richard Cohen in "Deep Breath of Life" says we should not judge because we cannot judge...."When we hold a judgment about someone, we are focusing on one moment from one angle.  Focus on the good and let all else go."  This is what I don't do.  In fact, this reminds me of something else I recently read.  The writer thought himself a perfectionist because he was always finding flaws and errors that other people overlooked.  But he realized what he really was is an imperfectionist because if he were a perfectionist he'd find perfection everywhere he looked.  I've always thought myself to be a perfectionist, too, because of my ability to notice flaws and errors.  Perhaps what I need to do is not stop being a perfectionist, but instead change my definition of what it means to be a perfectionist.


Father, help me to focus on what is good so that I can build up rather than tear down the work You are doing in others.


Link to scripture: http://mlbible.com/luke/6-41.htm


Take action: International Peace Institute

2 comments:

  1. Very insightful,and heartfelt.
    There is safety in observing and deciding what is best for others in addition to oneself.
    There can be isolationism in thinking one's views are most likely the most righteous and proper way of discerning God's plan. Some might think that living a -connected life- where one acknowledges a dig, and has meaningful dialogue directly with one whom they've criticized would be an excellent way to take responsibility for voicing the criticism, and growing in one’s relationships
    Blogging is like journaling, you get it out, just not to that one vital person you may need to.
    ~Blessings

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    1. "Blogging is like journaling, you get it out, just not to that one vital person you may need to" I agree, if you don't take the next step to ask for forgiveness. If something is brought to my attention by my conscience you can believe it won't let me alone until I make it right.

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