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Be Like Mike

“Nothing in this world is perfect.” There are probably a lot of different opinions and thoughts on that matter. Many people might think that I’m making a bold statement. Depending on what you want to believe, you could alter your perception on just about anything though.

For instance, you could say Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time. He won six championships in eight years and even had an 18-month hiatus in there. When he came back, he was out of shape and not exactly the MJ of old, but he was still an all-star player. The Bulls got knocked out of the playoffs that year, but he worked out harder than anyone else in the off-season and brought glory back to Chicago for the next three consecutive seasons. Michael Jordan was the perfect player. Larry Bird once even referred to him as “God in basketball shoes.” He was basketball perfection, so to speak.

To be as dominant as he was, he had to be the best, right? Well, he did have some major disappointments when he came out of retirement. He possibly even hurt his team in the playoffs that year, and when he did win the championships, he was surrounded by a cast of superstars. It was rumored that Michael originally retired, not because he wasn’t challenged anymore, but because of some nasty off-court, personal problems. Michael Jordan doesn’t seem so perfect anymore. It’s all about perception of what people want to believe. Ignorance is bliss, eh?

Not to sound sacrilegious, but to me, Audrey Hepburn seems perfect. Now how could God’s creation be more perfect than Him? Let me explain. I honestly don’t know a lot about Audrey. I know that she was beautiful, graceful and a person that cared about other people due to her humanitarian efforts that she was involved with before she died. It’s easy for me to see perfection in her because I didn’t know her. I’ve never seen any of her faults. In my mind, she is perfect. I’m sure her family and friends knew her faults very well, but I choose to live in my fantasy world because, you know what? It doesn’t matter either way. I choose to see perfection where I know imperfection lies.

Now when it comes to God, skeptics can drone on for days and days about the “imperfections” of the Bible and the whole idea of Christianity. To an outsider, God can seem to be pretty flawed for being the Creator of the universe. There are wars, famine, death, disease, hate, greed.

The Good Book is supposed to be God-inspired, but there is a non-stop argument over translation, and I’m only talking about the English translations. As much as many Christians like to think, Jesus wasn’t American, and he didn’t speak English. Even the nature of God can seem confusing. In the Old Testament God killed people over disobedience. How can a God of love slaughter so many people? Then, in the New Testament, God sends His son Jesus into the world to set us all straight and then becomes the ultimate sacrifice for our every sin.

The Bible either sounds like a Tolkien book or a Metallica song to someone who’s never set foot in a church before.

Once we start talking about all of this “God stuff” I start missing Audrey. It’s so easy to analyze a movie star opposed to the omnipotent God. You have to give Him a break though. He has been in the public eye more than she was.

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I think most religious people when asked the questions if they think God is perfect or not, would all respond with out hesitating with a resounding “Yes!” The rest of the population would either say “no,” or you might get a reluctant “yes” due to a sense of respect that they have for the man upstairs. It’s kind of like the respect people had for Michael Jordan when he came out of retirement for the second time. You have to remember, he was almost 40 then. Regardless of how he played, everyone still said he was the best.

When I look at the whole spectrum of what we call perfect and imperfect, I realize that a lot of people need perfect, or at least they think they do. Their friends have to be perfect, their family has to be perfect, and they have to have control of everything aspect of their life. Those people run them selves ragged and either end up bitter or—hopefully—wake up one day and realize that beauty is truly in the flaw.

I used to run myself ragged trying to be perfect; I did it for religion’s sake. One day I realized that I couldn’t do it anymore. I walked away from it all until I realized that being perfect is not the point. It never was. It’s the journey that’s important and not the arrival. It’s working out your salvation.

Through discovering that I don’t have to be perfect, it made more sense to me that God truly was perfection. What was my reasoning? Only perfect love could let me off the leash for being so imperfect.

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