At one point in my life I had the thought, “What if I don’t want to be perfect?”. Being perfect sounded too hard, too scary, and I couldn’t even comprehend what it meant. I shared this thought with a dear friend of mine and he reminded me, “Alex you should want to be perfect.” As he said those words, I was gently reminded by the Spirit that this was true. I had been instructed by the Savior to become like him. If that was true, then why was I feeling this way? I then began to digest my thoughts and understand why at first I didn’t want to be perfect.
I realized that I didn’t want to be perfect because I felt that being perfect meant being the best, or becoming better than everyone. I feel pressure from my fellow Latter-day Saints to be a perfectionist. “I’m better than you” because I’m the perfect Mormon, the perfect cook, the perfect friend, the perfect student, and so on…. Yeah, I know it sounds exhausting and I don’t want to be any of that. The truth is, I don’t want to disappoint myself if I can’t be this stereotypical “perfect” person that I feel I am expected to be by the faith and culture that I choose to live. I do not want to be a perfectionist. I don’t want to be perfect in the worlds eyes, I don’t want to be boring, I want to be me, and I want to become perfect through Jesus Christ.
The Savior has asked each of us to become like Him as quoted in the scriptures. “Therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect.” I think I had misinterpreted the idea of becoming perfect. I am expected to be perfect in Christ, not to be perfect in things or to other people. I am expected to develop Christlike attributes and become like Jesus Christ. In this life we are expected to develop qualities that reflect Christ. Some of those qualities are:
2. Charity and Love
To be perfect doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be flawless, in fact our weaknesses can become strengths which make us beautiful. The Greek definition of perfect is: “complete in all its parts and full grown.” We are not expected to be 100% all of the time. To become perfect takes a lifetime of growth and a whole lot of grace!
The Savior doesn’t expect us to be perfect for other people, because he knows our hearts and our intentions. He knows me, He knows you, and is pulling for us. I believe that our Savior wants us home, and is pleading for us to accept His Atonement and become perfect through Him. Heavenly Father knows who we are and who we can become. We don’t have to become perfect today, but we are required to do our best.