By Guest Blogger Eric
The scripture “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Heavenly Father which is in heaven in perfect” (Matthew 5:48), has often caused me to groan in despair. The idea of reaching perfection seems so impossible; why even try?
I recall having similar feelings of inadequacy while attending art school. My drawings often looked rough and sloppy. I could see the finished result perfectly in my mind, but transferring that vision to my hands was nearly impossible. I was fortunate to be surrounded by instructors who would help me recognize and correct my mistakes. I was inspired and driven by my classmates to constantly work to improve my abilities. And when I felt down and needed to believe in myself, my family was always near.
I remember specifically a time when giving up seemed the best option. My final projects were soon due and I was sure I would be dismissed from the art program. I was overwhelmed with my studies, working a job after school, and felt unworthy to ask for help from my Heavenly Father because of past mistakes.
Late in the evening, I found the courage to kneel by the side of my bed and open up my heart to my Heavenly Father. During the prayer, a sense of peace and warmth filled me. A feeling let me know everything was going to be okay. Looking back, a lot of the stress was brought on by my requirement to be “perfect” in all areas in my life. My Heavenly Father’s expectations were much different.
I now know that mistakes, sin, missed expectations and ugly drawings are all part of a greater plan—a plan that often compels me to be humble and ask for constant guidance from my Heavenly Father. I have recently come to love a verse of scripture found in the Book of Mormon:
“And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.” Ether 12:27
Our Heavenly Father sent us to this earth life knowing that we would be imperfect. Through his infinite love and wisdom a Savior was provided to pay for the sins of all mankind, even mine. Through his atonement a way is provided to return back to my loving Heavenly Father. To partake of the healing power of the atonement I need to strive to be humble and follow the Savior.
As I have relied on my Heavenly Father, some of my weaknesses have become strengths. I know even though there are still struggles, He is there and none of us is ever alone.