(The following is an outline of the sermon that was preached by Michael Larsen on February 10, 2019.)
There are two great enemies of grace. One of them is legalism – trying to earn God's approval through rules. The other is perfectionism – trying to prove my worth by being perfect.
What perfectionism does to us.
1. It defeats my initiative. We never get started on a good thing because we’re waiting for the perfect circumstances. As a result, perfectionism causes procrastination.
2. It damages my relationships. Do you enjoy being around somebody who's always correcting what you do?
3. It destroys my happiness. Ecclesiastes 7:16 says, “Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise— why destroy yourself?” There's only one antidote to perfectionism: Experience the grace of God. Learn to relax in the grace of God.
How do you learn to R.E.L.A.X. in the grace of God?
REALIZE NOBODY'S PERFECT.
Nothing is perfect except God's Word. That's why you need to build your life on God's Word, because nothing else is perfect.
ENJOY GOD'S UNCONDITIONAL LOVE.
1 John 3:1 says, “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
LET GOD HANDLE THINGS
1 Peter 5:7 tells us to “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
ACT IN FAITH, NOT FEAR
Remember how you got into God's family in the first place. In Ephesians 2:8 it says “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.” As it says in Colossians 2:6: So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him.
EXCHANGE MY PERFECTIONISM FOR GOD'S PEACE
Perfectionism destroys peace. Matthew 11:28 says, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."
God knows there's no chance you're going to be perfect. So He came up with grace. That's why God sent Jesus because Jesus was perfect. And we get in on His perfection. You can either try all you want to or you can just accept the perfection of Christ.