I wish I was perfect. I'm not. That's not a news flash to anyone who reads this blog, I'm sure. I do not listen to Christian music exclusively. I do read Jenny the Bloggess with all her irreverence and thoroughly enjoy the sarcastic humor she and her audience display. I use the phrase LMAO, and I do say the word ASS (Sorry if that offends you). In traffic I have been known to call people donkeys because they do something I think is stupid. O, and yeah, while my potty mouth has cleaned up drastically in the last two years, every once in a while the f-bomb drops when I least expect it. Sometimes I do or say or write things that cause other people unnecessary pain. I just wish that God would put a gag over my mouth and only let me say or do the things that He wants me to say or do. Nothing more, nothing less. But then, there would be no need for His grace, would there?
If we were all perfect, we wouldn't need grace. We wouldn't need Jesus. We wouldn't need the incredible sacrifice He made on the cross. If we were all perfect, we wouldn't have free will. Since He would be making all the choices for us, we wouldn't get a say. I wouldn't get to choose where I live. I wouldn't get to choose whether to sit at home and be alone, or to go out with my friends and enjoy a movie. I have heard over and over that we are supposed to consult Him on every decision we make, down to the smallest detail. Am I alone in struggling with this?? Surely God doesn't care if I purchase pure white sugar or stevia. How 'bout Diet Coke with Cherry vs Diet Coke with Lime?
Free will is awesome, but it can lead to us making choices that hurt other people. It can lead to public failures, and equally public apologies. It can lead to self-indulgent, selfish choices that benefit no one (including the choice maker). But it can also lead to incredibly beautiful things. The choice to step up and be a hero in the face of great disasters. The choice to serve a greater good by joining the armed forces and fighting for an ideal that is hard to express, but defines a way of life. The choice to love even when your rights are being violated. The choice to pray for people who have used or manipulated you. The choice to believe God is real and loves you even when you feel overwhelming evidence that He is not, and does not.
When it's all said and done, I'll take imperfection and free will over perfection and no choice. I will continue to make mistakes, and the people affected by those mistakes will either choose to forgive or not, based on their own free will. I learn from my mistakes -- sometimes in very hard and bitter ways -- but I would rather make a right or wrong choice, and endure either the good or the bad that emerges from that choice, then to have no choice to make. I am flawed. I am imperfect. I own that imperfection and strive to be better. I strive to overcome and be more like Christ. None of my imperfections are enough to separate me from the love of Christ Jesus. Nothing I can do or say will make Him turn away and say "I disown you". Instead, He is gentle and kind. He disciplines me when I need it, and He loves on me always. I am His beloved daughter. Someday I will be perfect, just not today.