In the famous Sermon on the Mount, Jesus speaks of being “perfect” or “be perfect, like your father in heaven is perfect.” This never made sense to me until I dug deeper for a more accurate translation. Remember, “all translation is interpretation” – Kennith Bailey. Much has changed since the 1700’s when the King James English Bible translation was first created. How we live and how we think in 2023 are polar opposite to the 1700’s. Imagine showing someone in the 1700’s a cell phone or even a laptop. Mind blowing to say the least.
A better translation of “perfect” is the phrase popularized by the game of poker known as “ALL IN.” In order to prevent players with more chips from simply raising the bet to exceed what the other players had, there is a betting option called going “ALL IN.” If you go “ALL IN” you can not be raised out of the game, no matter how little you have to put in. You’re “ALL IN” bet is always enough, no matter how small.
As flawed humans we can never be perfect, and God doesn’t expect us to be. Rather he gives us the choice to go “ALL IN” with our faith. I can’t be perfect, but I can go “ALL IN” and so can you. This means no matter how little we have to bring to the table, it’s more than enough. No matter what we put in, it means we have what it takes!
Many of you reading this are loaded down with guilt and shame from past experiences. You believe deep down you’re not enough and that you don’t have what it takes, so you try to “prove it” in all matter of ways. The challenge is, whenever you do “prove it” the feeling never lasts and your guilt and shame rise up again to consume your joy. The lie of not having what it takes or not being enough is a popular one, and I used to believe it too. However, once I realized that no matter what I had done in the past or what was done to me, as long as there was breath in my body I could go “ALL IN” with my Heavenly Father and whatever state I’m in, is enough.
You are enough, you do have what it takes. Now it’s time to go “ALL IN.”