Painful Imperfection

“The words are still too small” my supervisor said. “Next week you’re going to have to step it up or I’m moving you to tie-dying.” There is nothing harder, or more painful to me than constantly feeling like my work isn’t good enough. I find myself trying so hard but always coming out feeling like a failure because of the perceived constant criticism from my supervisor. As I ran through that conversation in my head my heart dropped. When I walked out of the Air Brush Room and saw all of the T-shirts the children had done my heart dropped even more. I pictured all of the wide smiles and proud faces that I had seen from all of the kids when they completed their work. They thought they did so well! So did I until this morning. As the day went on my frustration grew. It seemed like everything I did was wrong! Every time my supervisor came to me or even looked at me there was something else I felt like I didn’t do right and it had been like that all week.

I managed to get through the morning but when lunch came around I broke down. When I got to a quiet place I began asking God why I was even at camp. “I can’t do what you ask” I yelled in frustration. “I’m failing at everything!” With my head in my hands and tears running down my cheeks I began to sob. As I sat there in my broken state God began speaking to my heart. “Who are you trying to please?” He said. “Are you trying to please your supervisor or Me?” That’s when it hit me. I was only failing because my intentions were in the wrong place.


God is my ultimate supervisor.

I know that I am doing my best with the job I have been given. My work may not be perfect but as long as I am looking towards God and trying my hardest, then I am not failing. People may change but God never does. In peoples’ eyes there will always be something that you are not doing well enough but God looks at the heart and our intentions. With God, there is nothing painful about imperfection. He always sees the good. It is because of that difference in views that I realized relying only on my supervisor’s approval will only lead to disappointment and frustration. If you, like me, are struggling with disapproval and frustration this is my encouragement to you:

Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you are working for The Lord rather than for people.
~Colossians 3:23

As I look back at what I consider to be the hardest week of the summer I find myself so thankful to God my Father. The purpose of every tear and all the frustration I felt had a lesson I needed to learn. It is in the brokenness that I am able to bring my focus back to God and be refined. I love how God’s light always shines in our darkest moments. Don’t lose hope in your struggle. There is light for you too! Just look up to Jesus because clarity will come out of the situation and a lesson will be learned.


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