The Christian’s goal is not faultlessness but the pursuit of Jesus, which leads to the abundant life.
It’s common to hear Christians say, “You don’t have to be perfect—God loves you just the way you are.” And that statement is true, except it’s not the whole picture.
Yes, the Lord’s love is unconditional; we can do nothing to change it. At the same time, His plan for all believers is to make us increasingly like Himself. It’s a perfection that transcends our understanding of the term—a perfection found not in how we perform but in our willingness to surrender our life to Him.
In Matthew 5:48 (NIV), Jesus says, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Instead of hearing those words as an impossible expectation, think of them as an invitation. He’s welcoming you to the abundant life, the healing of your soul, the recovery of your true self. It’s what we know as the process of sanctification.
To be sanctified—in other words, to become holy—is not a pursuit of faultlessness but rather one of becoming more and more like Jesus. And there’s just one way to do that: Say “yes” to His invitation each day.
Think about it
• Read Matthew 5:6 and 2 Corinthians 3:18. How do these verses make you feel about Jesus’ command to be perfect?