As a choir director, I sometimes get caught up in perfectionism. Of course, we all want to do our very best work, especially where the worship of God is concerned. But sometimes, at least for me, that striving for excellence turns into something destructive, instead of constructive. It is especially a danger to me when I am working toward major feast days such as Holy Week and the Christmas Season. I find myself being hyper-critical of my own skills and failings, but worse than that, I find myself being hard on the others I work with and serve in a misguided attempt to make everything perfect. That's because perfectionism is really a sin. It is a manifestation of the sin of Pride.
Perfectionism says, "You know what, God? I've got this. I don't need your help."
Humility says, "Lord, this is all in your hands. I have done the best I can with the talents that you have given me. May it glorify your Name."
|In the "language of flowers" violets symbolize humility. |
Isn't it interesting that we see them right around Holy Week and Easter?
Preparation for Holy Week is all about disposing yourself to God's will for your life. That includes letting him direct the action. As our divine parent, he gives us all the talents we possess in order to give him glory, just as a human father would give a child $5 to buy a Father's Day present. He does this, not because he needs the gift, but to teach the child to think of someone other than themselves. When we use our talents, whether they are gifts of song or oratory, or something you might consider mundane, like organizational skills, we give God glory. And just as the light up tie that plays "Amazing Grace" is "just what your father wanted", so our very best use of our talents is pleasing to God. All we can do is our very best. After all the preparation is done, no matter how well we have prepared, we must leave the rest to God.
If the music is a prayer, then it will be beautiful, regardless of the fact that the Basses missed that interval or the Sopranos were a little weak. The graces God gives us are always sufficient.