As I near the end of the seven-year process of writing my first book, I have gained a new appreciation for the perfect sacrifices that were required for sin atonement before Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection, which ended the need for sacrifice. Discussing this with several other author friends, we all agree that writing a book seems as challenging as searching for and preparing a perfect, spotless lamb. Of course, there never was — and never will be — any perfect sacrifice except Jesus. And there never has been or ever will be any perfect book besides the Bible. This is the very reason why it’s so stressful for us to try to present any perfect thing that’s created by our own hands.
The Beauty of the Spots
But I’m finally at the point where I can embrace the fact that I’m not writing the gospels. Hallelujah! My book has no chance of being perfect no matter how much I want it to be. And as I get ready to hit “Send” on the final approval for my book to proceed to publication, I have two hopes for its flaws. First, that I’ll be able to laugh at myself for not catching all the mistakes even with the dozens of read-throughs that I have done. Second, that God will allow me to see how He uses those mistakes. I realize that’s a big request. But I also realize I would miss an entire part of the beautiful transaction in the interaction between man and God if somehow I were able to produce the perfect book.
The Opportunity Afforded by Faith
That realization is calming. And yet if I’m honest, it’s a bit convicting as I reflect on the times I have expected perfection from others. The last time I purchased a brand-new car, I was expecting it to be in perfect condition on the day of delivery. The last time I had a meal at a fancy restaurant, I was expecting near-perfect food and service. And the last time I had surgery, I was definitely expecting perfection from the surgeon’s hands. When we expect perfection from ourselves or others, we lose the opportunity to display our faith as a living testimony.
All for Him
We’re all on a journey, friend. Jesus is the one who will remove our spots when we get to Him. Until then, perhaps we can be a little more forgiving of all of our broken parts and processes and the mistakes that we should have caught. We work as though onto the Lord, loving Him with all our heart, soul, and mind; but at some point, we have to step forward in faith and in joy, and hit “Send.”
Joanna Sanders is a graduate of Villanova University and Moody Theological Seminary. She’s also the founder and head writer of Colossians46.com, which provides biblical content support, writing, and editing. Joanna is the co-author and editor of the recently released, “DiscipleTrip” by Dr. Joey Cook. Joanna’s first book, “Fire Women” is scheduled for release and publication this fall. Most importantly, she is wife to Geoff and mom to three godly men-in-training. Her blog name “The Landing” comes from the account of the Ark resting on the mountain, creating a settled place — a landing — for man to start over, which echoes her new life in Christ.