Matthew 5:48 ESVYou therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Ephesians 2:8-9 ESVFor by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
I already posted a disclaimer last month that I may be way off sometimes in my scripture interpretations according to scholars, but I believe God uses His Word in whatever way we need it. Also noted that anything I suggest be done is something on myself. I'm no hypocrite, I'll never claim to be getting it all right.
I've always been confused by this scripture and the idea that God expects us to be perfect. Really, God? You know we aren't perfect. So then in Ephesians, we see one of many verses explaining that God saves us. Because of Jesus's sacrifice, we are made perfect.
Well, sort of. Except that we mess up every stinkin day. We have the gift of forgiveness, then we're pure again, for at least a few
A while back though, I started thinking about this and may have gotten a glimpse of clarity.
I love my husband dearly. Way more than I love myself. I really want him to be perfect. Everything I do for him is in some way related to keeping him perfect. If he's sad, I try to cheer him up. I try to keep him healthy (except in the case that this interferes with the first statement, which sometimes requires Reese's Cups). If he messes up (GASP! I know you didn't expect that.) what do I do? I forgive him. Period. Then it's over. We learn from the ways we hurt each other so we can figure out how not to do them again and work again toward that "perfect" marriage. Whatever that looks like.
I love my children. They're not perfect because they're learning. Because they're human. Because they're really weird. (They get it honest.) But I love them as if they're perfect. As if they are CAPABLE of perfection. I hold them to that standard, never saying, "Oh well, they'll never get any better." What kind of parent would I be?
I'm not comparing myself to God, but I am seeing a connection of the love God gives us and the love I give to Erick and my babies. God is love. God is perfect. God makes my love perfect when I am doing it right.
So if I apply this to me...God expects me to be perfect. When I'm not, it disappoints him maybe, but it gives him something to teach me. Regardless what I do that, he's going to love me AS IF I'm perfect. That's always the standard he holds me to, since he equipped us with that gift of forgiveness so long ago.
Love people with God's perfect love. Love as if everyone has the capacity to be perfect. No matter how much they mess up, act out, or how weird they may be. They're good enough for the creator of the universe to die for. The least we can do is love them on earth.