My name means strong, and I once thought that meaning empowered me to pull myself up by the boot straps no matter what happened. Only in the worst moments when I see my strength has failed, do I realize my best is worthless.
And just as I crack under the weight of my imperfections, I hear His voice. "Child, what makes you think your strength alone is good enough?"
It is confusing when Jesus says in Matthew 5:48 "Be perfect, for I am perfect." If you read Matthew 5, Jesus had just recited the beatitudes, admonishing the Jews to abide by his Father's law, and what that fulfillment of the law was. Jesus knew we can't be perfect. So why did he say we should?
"But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9This amazes me. God is glorified through our weakness! Glorified when we strive for righteousness, fall, and struggle to get back up, yet only while looking to God for strength.
The hard part is the attitude we keep in the midst of it. Do we give up and fall into the arms of grace? Or do we try to press on in our own strength?
His grace is all we need. And I've learned, sometimes painfully, that God is always trying to show us we can draw strength from Him. He needs us to realize, his grace is all we need to press on. He gives grace to the humble. Those who are willing to admit they are nothing without Him.
Grace is His gift to us, and the only thing that will make us perfect, eternally.