Elijah didn’t have an easy life. He’d had a compound fracture in his leg at age 18, had crumbling plaster in his fixer-upper house as an adult, and was banned from his favorite restaurant–the reason for the restaurant fiasco isn’t remembered anymore.
He spent decades trying to become a better person, all to no avail. A psychological disorder was diagnosed eventually, which made sense to his family. Now, the healing could begin.
Elijah agreed to medical treatment, which also included talk therapy. He started to go to church for the first time in his life, and he had a remarkable transformation. It’s what he wanted for years.
In talk therapy, it came out that Elijah blamed himself for all his troubles. A golden light dawned in his heart when his therapist pronounced him not at fault.
“Do you mean I’m not the reason for all my troubles?” he asked his therapist excitedly.
“There is no part of any of this that shows you to be the cause. You have to lighten up, Elijah, and ease up on yourself. On the other hand, if you want an early death–just keep on blaming yourself. It’s your choice, Elijah. What’s it going to be?”
Elijah told his therapist he wanted to live. He’d slay the perfectionism monster, he would look at himself in a new light, and he’d work it out.
His therapist beamed with gladness of Elijah’s choice, but he also gave a warning. “Elijah, you still have to be careful of perfectionism. You may automatically try to be perfect when it comes to healing. That just isn’t possible. We live in a fallen world. There is no one perfect except God himself.”
Elijah nodded. “I agree. Okay, so what I do now?”
The answer came that therapy was now finished, and all he had to do was to get to know himself, accept he wasn’t perfect, and enjoy life. He would still have difficulties along the way, everyone did, but now he wouldn’t have to fear them.
The day Elijah discovered this became the first day he lived his imperfect life imperfectly, and he loved it. What freedom he had!