Day 248: Dying to the Ideal (September 5)

This is day 2 of our 3 day series on “Dying”.

Ideal:  Satisfying one’s conception of what is perfect; most suitable.  Existing only in the imagination; desirable or perfect but not likely to become a reality.  Representing an abstract or hypothetical optimum.

As someone who has had a lifelong struggle with perfectionism, I can honestly say, the above definition is so convicting and startling.  I cannot tell you how many times, my desire for the ideal has sabotaged my outlook on life, or on a relationship.  My ideals have not served me well.  They have not drawn others to me or helped me navigate life.  No, instead my ideals have served as false idols.  Blocking my path and acting as a stumbling block in the road of life.

I have had to repeatedly lay down my ideals.  My concept of what is perfect, but something truly magnificent and beautiful happened when I did!  Instead, of laying down ideals and deciding life would always be a disappointment and struggle, I laid them down and realized life would be more satisfying and full if I could just walk out each day in His Presence.  It’s amazing, because that’s when life began to be more “ideal”.

Honestly, oftentimes when we have a strong “ideal”, it’s actually just us trying to control our lives and those around us.  And we are doing it out of fear.  Idealism is a fear based activity, just the same as all other controlling behaviors.

When we hold closed fisted to our “ideals” and the way we believe things should be, we hinder God.  The most amazing things have happened in my life, when I have chosen to let go.  When I have dared to believe that God had good plans for my life and that He is my true Provider.

I can trust Him.  So can you, my friend.

Today, I offer up a challenge.  Take an honest look at your life.  Are you operating under an ideal?  Working hard with each breath and moment to make your desired ideal happen?  Have you become a slave to it?  Have you set it up like an idol in your life?  This may be a convicting process, but that’s ok!  There’s hope once we realize what we’re doing.  It’s never too late to make a change, remember?  If any of the above words have brought conviction to your heart, then I now encourage you to go before Abba and hand Him your ideal.  Repent and then ask Him what plans He has for you and how He wants you to partner with Him.  I’m so excited for your breakthrough…and mine….today!

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.  Proverbs 19:21

And He Who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.  Romans 8:27