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Jack R. Christianson, Women of Joy: Celebrating Motherhood

May 11, 2014

Becoming “true followers” of Jesus Christ is challenging because each of us is imperfect and each of us lives in an imperfect world. It is easy to lose hope if we continually concentrate and focus on those imperfections both in the world and within ourselves.

In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect”. This scripture can cause anxiety for some when the reality of mortality is that no one but Christ Himself obtained perfection in mortality. Our imperfections seem to loom over us, paralyzing us into inaction as we fear we won’t measure up. With the thought that we cannot be perfect, we ask ourselves, why try?

Before we give up on ourselves, we need to consider the meaning of the word perfection. The footnote for Matthew 5:48 in the 2013 LDS edition of the King James Bible gives the Greek translation for perfect as “complete, finished, fully developed.” That’s much less intimidating than believing that perfect means “without flaw.” The Bible tells us, “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.” The footnote for this verse gives the alternate translations from the Hebrew for perfect: “Complete, whole, having integrity.”

Of Job the Old Testament says, “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” Was Job perfect? Was he complete, whole, and a man of integrity? I would say he most certainly was.

Were Noah and Job perfect as Christ was perfect? Not to my understanding. But were they complete, whole, finished? Did they have integrity? Did they have the priesthood ordinances and did they honor their covenants? Yes!

Can you and I do the same? We can.

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