Paralyzed By Perfectionism

Before this trip started I thought of all the things I could do to help people in Paraguay. Boy was I in for a ride. Weekly about two months before the trip we had weekly meetings in preparation for the trip. In the meetings, we shared our testimonies, feelings, and brainstormed how we could share our relationship we have with God to others. This was a lot for me to take in. I mean just last semester I had recommitted my life to Him. I gave up trying to do life for myself and finally let him take the wheel (*insert Carrie Underwood song*). I had fought so long to stay in the driver's seat but I was never satisfied with anything. Even when I gave the wheel up to him I was still backseat driving. One thing I struggled with and still struggle with periodically is perfectionism. Perfectionism is hindering because it can cut you down. Down to the point where you feel like you are never good enough for anything or anyone. This was an ongoing thing throughout my life. I have always had to be the best and master any task the first time. If I didn’t I would make up an excuse or get upset.

Well, folks that “would” turned into a “did” on this trip. It was hard for me to swallow but when we were sharing testimonies I kept in my head mine had to be around five to seven minutes. I practiced a lot, but I guess you never know where God is going to take you at the moment. After I finished my testimony it ended up being around 17 minutes long! Wow, that mind-boggled me because I felt I was only standing up there for at least 10…but 17 (mind you, it was 17 minutes with a translator, so cut that in half and I was around eight and a half minutes, but I tend to overreact…)! This number was swirling around in my mind and I found myself thinking about it to the point where I broke down thinking that this was terrible why couldn’t I have shortened it. Everyone else was able to but why not me?! I tried to hold back tears but in swept words of self-deprecation like waves hitting me over and over. They started spilling out while comforting from others helped I couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t do it. Perfectionism while it is not as prevalent in my life still comes in waves and certainly did on this trip because where there is good happening for the glory of the kingdom, the enemy is certainly taking every ounce of doubt and multiplying it to his advantage. Fast forward after a few days the team was doing affirmations and it came to me. There was silence and I thought well this is me, I offer nothing…turns out no one knew we were starting (oops!). Everyone went around and said something and it made me think I don’t need to try and be the best because God loves me for who I am and has provided me with security on earth. Just a handful of the affirmations included: persistent, trustworthy, trooper, daughter, dedicated, persistent faith, and servant of the most-high God. These truly hit me and made me realize that I am doing all I can to pursue Him. I am taking the steps and even though I’m not at the same level as someone else doesn’t mean I am any less His child. I am a child of God and I am grateful that He is my God. I’m even more grateful that I get to share Him with those I encounter in this game called life. Just a few verses that help me:

- Romans 5:8

- Galatians 1:10

- Philippians 4:13

- Peter 5:7.

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