Of course not! Obviously, no one is perfect except for Christ. So what in the world was James talking about in 1:4? He said, “And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” How could one ever be “perfect and complete, lacking in nothing”?
The word “perfect” used here in James 1:4 is not talking about living a perfect life, but is talking about reaching, fulfilling, and meeting the end we were designed for. Let me give an illustration to make this less confusing. When we are trying to drive a screw into a wall, we want to find the screwdriver that fits the particular shape of the head of the screw (a flathead in this case). So, we pull out the drawer and end up finding a beautiful screwdriver. It has a gold handle with a large, red ruby embedded at the bottom. The shaft is a precious metal and encrusted with diamonds. Unfortunately, the tip of this screwdriver is a Phillips and will not fit this particular screw. So, we go back into the drawer and end up finding a really old screwdriver. It has a wood handle that is worn, cracked, and splintering. The shaft is rusted and ugly. However, we look at the tip and it’s a flat head. We might exclaim, “Ahh, perfect!” The screwdriver itself is not perfect, but it is simply “perfect” for completing the task it was designed for.
The point is, we can still be chosen instruments of God even with our faults, assuming we’re still trying to walk right with the Lord (1 John 1:5-7). The question is, how? As the previous verses explain, by making it through suffering with endurance (2-4). The idea is, when we go through difficult times and still come out of it with a strong faith and trust in God, the Lord sees that He can use us for His will. He sees that we allowing Him to use us for the purpose He designed us for in accordance with His will.
So, are we sinless? Of course not. But are we “perfect”? That’s a question we must all answer for ourselves. Are we allowing the Lord to use us for His will? Are we pulling through the suffering in our lives with endurance? Or are we getting angry, blaming, or even leaving the Lord? We need to be tools for the Lord’s will. Let’s adopt the great mindset of Isaiah 64:8, “But now, O LORD, You are our Father, We are the clay, and You our potter; And all of us are the work of Your hand.”