It's true, I am a perfectionist. Most people who know me well would not be shocked by this declaration. I've always believed in the importance of doing my best and striving for excellence in everything I do. It wasn't until recently, while crying through the study of Ephesians in the Bible Core Course that I am doing, that the Lord showed me where this perfectionism stemmed from.
As a high school student, I was relentless in my studies. Not because I wanted to learn more or had a great hunger for knowledge, but because I was afraid of failure. Afraid that if I didn't get good grades, that somehow I wasn't good enough. The pressure I put on myself was insane. I would take ridiculous notes in every class and then go home and rewrite them until they looked perfect. On an assignment, quiz, or exam, if I didn't get a perfect score, I would cry and berate myself. Since the score wasn't perfect, somehow I wasn't perfect.
Christmas has always been my favorite time of year. I grew up in a Christian home and read the Bible stories surrounding Christmas every year, but never thought about it in these terms. This past Sunday, Pastor Mike from New Life Church in Corpus, shared some insights we can take from Luke 1:5-38. It spoke to my heart so much that I wanted to share it with you. If you have been struggling with understanding God's faithfulness, unanswered prayers, doubt, or frustration, this may speak to your heart as well.
Gabriel's Announcement to Zachariah
Zachariah, a priest in the temple, and his wife, Elizabeth, walked faithfully with God. Scripture tells us that they were righteous in God's eyes and were careful to obey all of the Lord's commandments and regulations. It also tells us that they were not able to have children, in a time when being "barren" meant you or your husband had sinned and were being punished. Regardless of what others believed of them or how they felt, they continued doing what the Lord asked of them. They were faithful. Then on an ordinary day, doing exactly what he did on a normal basis, Zachariah was met by the angel, Gabriel, announcing the answer to his and Elizabeth's prayers. They were going to have a child.
"It is in a place of faithfulness