YOUR DOG IS NOT PERFECT
Wait.....don't kill me. There's more....
Your dog is not technically a perfect dog, but he is perfect to you.
In your eyes your dog is perfect. He is your "fur baby".
Maybe your dog has an overbite, an underbite, a lazy eye or is missing a leg. His markings may not be considered perfect for his breed so he won't win the Westminster Dog Show this year; but when you look at him your heart still skips a beat like the first day you laid eyes on him.
And it's not that you are not aware of certain "character flaws" your pup may have (i.e. chewing slippers, digging in the garden or occasionally stealing that steak off the counter that you just took off the grill) it's just that those qualities don't affect your perfect love for him.
Essentially, your dog is perfect...for you. You don't turn a blind eye to his behavioral "no-nos" and not correct him. Of course you give discipline and correction as needed to keep him, and everyone else around him, safe. But, at the end of the day, there is nothing your dog can do to not be perfect in your eyes, right?
It's the same with us and God.
We are perfect in God's eyes because of His perfect love for us. His love is what makes us perfect. We don't have to actually be perfect. We are perfect because we are perfectly loved. There is a big difference. That means our "perfection" is not something that we can, should, would or ever could attain to on our own. Our perfection is not on us...it's on God.
We don't have to actually be perfect. We are perfect because we are perfectly loved.
When I focus on that truth I feel a huge sense of relief. If my "perfection" was dependent on me, on something I had to do, I could lose it. But if my "perfection" is dependent on the unconditional, unchanging, unfailing, undeniable, all-consuming love of God for me...well then I am golden.
This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 1John 4:9-10
When God made your spirit, He made you because He wanted to be in relationship with you. That means you were accepted from Day 1. Actually, you were accepted even before Day 1 since you were accepted in God's thoughts about you before He created you. So does that count as like Day -1? I don't know. Any who...just know He accepted you from the very beginning.
It also doesn't mean He won't discipline you or correct you when you get off course in life. Just like you correct Fido out of love and a desire for his well-being as well as the well-being of everyone around him, God does the same with us.
God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in His holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:10-11
When you went and picked out your dog, whether from a shelter, rescue or breeder, did you go there thinking you were going to find the "perfect" dog that would never dig in the garden, never chew your slippers and never bark like a madman at 2AM over absolutely nothing? No! Of course you didn't. You went to find a dog...your dog...the one that was going to be perfect for you. And how did you know? You just knew. Your heart just knew which dog was the dog for you.
Same with God. He knew He wanted you. He had no expectation that you would never spiritually pee on the neighbor's prized rose bushes, steal dinner off the counter or chew up one of His slippers. He didn't care. He knew He wanted you and would love you anyway. He simply knew that you were perfect for Him.
Friends, we can rest easy in the assurance of God's perfect love for us and never ever fear that we will lose our treasured status in His eyes.
Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Romans 8:39
Love and puppy kisses,
Angel's Mom (a.k.a. Susan )
P.S. If you would like to know more about the origins of The Angel Food Diaries, please read here.