I had a solo at church yesterday. I was supposed to be there at 8:45 to practice. The last time we had practiced, I sang with the vocals in. I hadn’t sang the song by myself yet. So, I really needed to be there on time. Well, I wake up to a call from a member of the worship team and she asks me if I’m okay. I look at the clock and it is 9:19 am! So, I start getting ready, practicing my solo multiple times in my room and in the car! I didn’t get there early enough to run through my song at all. I was kind of freaking out, a little nervous to say the least. During the offertory prayer, I was praying that God would use my voice and use it to speak what He wanted to say to the hearts of the people. The song began and I messed up the beginning part, speeding up the timing. The rest of the song went okay but when I went to sit down, I began to sense the perfectionism creeping in, the enemy’s voice. “You could have done so much better than that! If you wouldn’t have slept in, you wouldn’t have messed up. You embarrassed yourself.” As all of this commotion was going on, I sensed God speaking to me, “Amy, it’s not about your performance but about your posture.”
It was in that moment that I realized that regardless of whether or not I messed up, God was pleased. It wasn’t about whether or not the timing or the notes were perfect. As long as my heart is focused on glorifying Him and praising Him, perfection isn’t necessary. As long as my heart is humbly bowed before Him in awe and worship, I’m in the right posture. As Psalm 51:16-17 reads in the Message:
“Going through the motions doesn’t please you, a flawless performance is nothing to you. I learned God-worship when my pride was shattered. Heart-shattered lives ready for love don’t for a moment escape God’s notice.”
Perfectionism is a form of pride. It’s not wanting to mess up because you don’t want to be associated with failure. We learn to truly worship God when we are humbled before Him, broken, weary, and wounded. The moments where our pride is shattered and all that we have left is our mess, Jesus comes to heal and restore. He doesn’t want us to find our value in our performance but in His purchase. He paid the ultimate price for us, giving His life for our freedom.
I want to do my best for the Father but that doesn’t have anything to do with my performance. The Father is far more interested in the state of my heart and why I’m singing. It isn’t to bring me glory or fame, but to use the gift that He has given me for His glory. Always.
For all of the perfectionists, don’t be so hard on yourself. Do your best but if you mess up, don’t let that define you. You are worth so much more than your mistakes. Jesus loves you beyond all you could ever imagine and the messes we make cannot change that. He is faithful. He is constant. “Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins (Psalm 51:1).” His love is unfailing and no one can comprehend His “great compassion” for us. Rest in His love and posture your heart after His.