Aim For Perfection - Day 21

Aim for perfection

II Corinthians 13:11, NIV


There's an old story about a man who was walking along a country lane when he started to see an amazing sight. Every hundred yards or so, a target was drawn - sometimes on a tree, sometimes on the side of a barn, sometimes on a fence post. In the exact center of each target, was an arrow. Marveling at the idea of a marksman so accurate that he hit the bull's eye every time, he went on into the village to find out who was responsible for such an incredible feat. Finally he was led to the man.


When he found the man, he immediately praised his marksmanship and asked him how he had accomplished such an incredible level of perfection. The man just laughed and replied that it really wasn't all that hard. He just shot the arrow first and then painted the target wherever the arrow landed.


Aim for perfection. That is how the translators of the NIV version put it. In the KJV it is rendered "Be perfect". Other versions translate this part of the passage, "Be complete". The idea is a Christian is made complete by striving for perfection. Now we know that mortal men cannot accomplish this, but we are to do our best to aim for this perfection in our Christian walk before God.


Far too many people are like the man in the story above. They already have an idea of what God wants, and they know what they want, so they just shoot first and draw the target afterward. Then they step back to admire their accuracy in the way they are living before God. Many will use their effort in reading the Word of God to try to prove what they already believe, instead of trying to find out what the Bible says. We are all guilty of this from time to time, but when we realize that we are not aiming the arrow at the target, but are placing the target around the arrow (in other words, we are not trying to live according to God's standard of perfection, but are instead living the way we want and calling it perfect) then we need to change.


For God's Word defines perfection, and we all have a duty to aim for that perfection. One last thought: When we play our games, such as throwing darts or shooting at targets, we will not always hit the bull's eye. However, we are a lot more likely to hit the target of God's choosing if we will aim for the center of that target, rather than just shoot our arrows at random and let them land where they may.


Today's reading is I Corinthians 11 through Galatians 6. These passages describe the perfection that God wants us to be aiming for and, with His help, we will achieve!