There is so much emphasis put on not expecting yourself to be perfect, and I think that’s a good thing. Being able to realize and accept that once in a while you are going to mess up and when that happens, allowing yourself to fall back on the grace of God, can take such a huge burden off your back.
I believe that in any event God calls us to strive for perfection, so I don’t think knowing that we as humans will never be 100% perfect is an excuse to not try. God doesn’t ask us to strive for perfection to set us up for failure; rather, I think it’s a chance to humble ourselves and realize how much we need Him in every moment.
I have trouble sometimes with expecting myself to be perfect. I can get so discouraged so easily when one little thing doesn’t go exactly how I thought it should, and I blame it on myself. But something I have been noticing lately is not only do I expect myself to be perfect, but I think a lot of the time I expect others to be perfect, too. I feel like this is so easy to do without even noticing and it leads to so much unnecessary disappointment.
People are going to let me down sometimes. Someone I thought I could depend on, or want to be able to depend on, is going to fall through. Someone is going to say or do something that I would have never expected them to. There is no way around this. I’m not saying I think we should just let it slide when someone repeatedly lets us down because nobody’s perfect. It’s very possible and so necessary in some situations to extend grace but to also not put yourself in a position to be taken advantage of.
But I know I personally, at least, need to learn to deal with disappointment better. It’s okay to feel disappointed but what’s not okay is when you dwell in that disappointment, and I think I do that a lot. When I start to feel disappointed, I’ve gotten into the habit of just accepting that defeat and usually greatly overthinking the situation which leads to the feeling lasting way longer than it should.
I go into situations with such high expectations not only for myself, but for whoever else is involved. And in no way do I think we need to lower our expectations of people, but I think we need to be better prepared for when they don’t meet our expectations because sooner or later that’s going to happen.
When you go through a period of time that seems like disappointment after disappointment it’s so easy to adopt the attitude that all anyone is ever going to do is let you down. Lots of times that leads to lowered expectations which leads to accepting less than you deserve.
People are not perfect. People are inconsistent. People may say one thing and do something completely different. People break promises. People leave you behind. In the midst of that it’s so easy to lose sight of the fact that we have a God who is not human. Who is perfect.
“God doesn’t come and go. God lasts. He’s the Creator of all you can see or imagine. He doesn’t get tired out; doesn’t pause to catch his breath. He knows everything inside and out.”
-Isaiah 40:28 (The Message)
God is the only one in this world who will never let you down. And when others let you down, there is a 100% success rate in running straight to Him for comfort and assurance. Making God your first resort instead of your last resort when facing disappointment is so important.
I know I take it so for granted knowing that He has always been and will always be. There is no one else in my life or your life that we can say that about. And yet we choose to place so much more of our trust and hope in flawed humans than we do in a perfect God. Why is that? I don’t know.
What I do know is that when all else fails, God is there. He is with me when life is great and He is with me when life is hard. He is with me through my successes and my failures. He doesn’t come and go, He lasts. People flow in and out of our lives, but God remains. People don’t follow through, but God has never broken a promise. And He makes Himself readily available to us every moment of every day!!! We always have him! He wants us to depend on Him. He has never disappointed anyone who has chosen to depend on Him with all their heart. He is the only one we need, and we have Him without a shadow of a doubt.
It is so easy to get so discouraged when we mess up or when someone else doesn’t meet our expectations or hopes for them. Be encouraged by the fact that God knew we as humans would never reach absolute perfection and He still chooses to love us daily. He knew we would constantly let Him down through sin and He still chose to die for us.
Be encouraged by the fact that God is today who He was yesterday and who He will be tomorrow. He doesn’t go back on His word, and His word says that He loves us with an everlasting love. No human can ever do for us what God does for us and we can’t expect them to. Everyone should have people that they love and trust, but inevitably some form of disappointment will come from that sooner or later. But when our ultimate faith and hope is in the Lord, we can have the kind of peace that surpasses all understanding in knowing that’s one relationship that will never let us down.