Not too long ago, I found the following poem written by a teen about perfection.
Never there, always out of reach
In the distance, but on the horizon
Tears of sorrow
Reaching towards the Goal
but then… there is you
Always making the Goal
Laughs and Smiles to all your buds
A smirk back to the losers
To forgive myself
I suspect that desiring to be the perfect leader isn’t far from most of our consciousness. No one wants to lead imperfectly. If you don’t know what your imperfections are, just try leading. They’ll jump out at you like those massive lit signs on a nighttime freeway. They’ll stare you down and wear you down. One thing I’ve learned along the way about leadership: leading exposes imperfections. So, we try to be perfectly perfect…and we fail, miserably.
And then, moments like Maundy Thursday, Good Friday & Easter come along. They challenge the perfectly perfect perfectionism in us. They offer grace. They remind us that God has addressed our imprecations and that when our imperfections show, there is grace, forgiveness and victory in a cross and empty tomb. Suddenly, while leadership seeks to expose our imperfections, God seeks to heal them. This young teen was on to something. “Trying, failing to forgive myself” isn’t possible. There’s only one forgiveness we need: God’s.