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Only Imperfection Is Intolerant of Imperfection!

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Only Imperfection Is Intolerant of Imperfection

François Fénelon (6 August 1651 – 7 January 1715)

It seems to me that you need to be a little more big-hearted about the imperfection of other people. I know you can’t help but see these imperfections when they come right before your eyes and neither can you prevent involuntary opinions about others from popping into your mind. And nobody will deny that the imperfections of others cause us a lot of inconvenience! But it will be enough if you are willing to be patient with imperfections, whether they be serious or not so serious. Do not allow yourself to turn away from people because of their imperfections.

            If there is one mark of perfection, it is simply that it can tolerate the imperfections of others. It is able to adjust. It becomes all things to all men. Sometimes we find the most surprising faults in otherwise good people. But we must not be surprised. It is best to let these faults alone and let God deal with them in His time. If we deal with them, we shall end up pulling up the wheat with the tares. I have found that God leaves, even in the most spiritual people, certain weaknesses which seem to be entirely out of place. This is true of all of us. And all of us need to be quick to recognize our own imperfections, letting God deal with them.

            As for you, labor to be patient with the weaknesses of other people. You know from experience how bitterly it hurts to be corrected. So work hard to make it less bitter for others. Although I am not saying that you correct other people too much. That is not your problem. Your problem is that you become cool when you discover faults in other people, and you tend to quit associating with them. So you need to deal with that problem.

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