“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me” — 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NRSV).

Slipping through my fingers, the delicate dessert dish shattered as it hit the countertop. What else could go wrong? The small, stemmed dish was one of six, a set belonging to my mother.

Earlier that day, the chain of my favorite necklace broke. The next day, I was cleaning, rearranging and organizing my office when I accidentally knocked my computer printer to the floor. Broken into several pieces, I tried to reassemble it. It was beyond fixing. I had to order a new one.

When we invite Christ to be our Savior and Lord, we’re made new. However, that doesn’t mean we’re automatically perfect. It means we’ve accepted we’re imperfect sinners in need of His amazing grace.

In an imperfect world, perfection can never be achieved by human effort. But, as the Apostle Paul said in Philippians 3:12, “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me His own.”

While I was a believer, I wasn’t a Christ-follower until I accepted His gift of grace in my late 40s. Before then, I was a perfection addict. Striving to achieve that goal meant denial of my imperfections.

When Jesus made me His own, my eyes were opened to His perfect truth. I sought Him in the pages of scripture and through my daily journal, where I poured out my heart and need for more of Him.

Minister and teacher Oswald Chambers once said, “Christian perfection is not, and never can be, human perfection. Christian perfection is the perfection of a relationship with God that shows itself to be true even amid the seemingly unimportant aspects of human life.

“When you obey the call of Jesus Christ, the first thing that hits you is the pointlessness of the things you have to do. The next thought that strikes you is that other people seem to be living perfectly consistent lives. Such lives may leave you with the idea that God is unnecessary—that through your own human effort and devotion you can attain God’s standard for your life. In a fallen world this can never be done.

“I am called to live in such a perfect relationship with God that my life produces a yearning for God in the lives of others, not admiration for myself. Thoughts about myself hinder my usefulness to God. God’s purpose is not to perfect me to make me a trophy in His showcase; He is getting me to the place where He can use me. Let Him do what He wants.”

Looking back, I can see how God has worked in my life to get me to this place, a place where He has used me for His purposes. His power is made perfect in our weaknesses.

Round is a transplanted Okie, originally from Lake Charles, Louisiana, and former Jay High School instructor, who now resides in Grove. In addition to writing a weekly faith-based column, “A Matter of Faith,” Round spends time with her grandchildren, shooting photos, hiking, working in her yard, reading and studying the Word, volunteering at her church and going on mission trips. For more information, or to contact Round, persons interested may contact her at carol@carolaround.com.