"Are we called to be perfect by Jesus? Yes. Are we capable of being perfect? Absolutely not. Richard Winter in his generous, brilliant and compelling style ushers us through the conundrum and then takes us to the glory of a God who was perfect on my behalf to bear the weight of my imperfection. This book is hopeful beyond words and a delight to read. You will be prepared to know the profound desire to be holy against the unholy desire to be perfect. Prepare to fly in the face of the false god of perfectionism." (Dan B. Allender, President, Mars Hill Graduate School, and author of The Wounded Heart and To Be Told)
"What is the difference between striving for excellence and seeking perfection? The former is attainable, the latter is not. The former spurs us on, the latter so often leads to chronic frustration, even despair and depression.
"In Perfecting Ourselves to Death
Dr. Winter ably explores this apparent paradox, and charts the emergence of perfectionism with its varied origins in our genetic inheritance, upbringing, temperament and motivation.
"As a teacher and counselor, he combines a background of medicine and psychiatry along with a clear biblical foundation and many years of pastoral experience. The result is a book which is thoughtful, clear and accessible and will provide an invaluable practical resource for preachers, counselors and sufferers alike." (Monty Barker, Consultant Psychiatrist and Visiting Professor of Psychiatry and Pastoral Care)
"Here is a clinically competent discipling resource that has been written to help Christians see how dehumanizing perfectionism spoils lives and to show how it may be overcome in Christ. To the other-oriented perfectionists, self-oriented perfectionists and other frazzled folk whom Professor Winter addresses he shows himself a truly wise guide." (J. I. Packer, Board of Governors Professor of Theology, Regent College)
"Somewhere in each of us there is always a voice that says, 'Not yet have you done enough.' Richard Winter helps us identify the source of the voice, whether it echoes from ancient caverns of parental criticism, the packaged idealisms of pop culture or the streams of doubt flowing from a damaged soul. Then he surprises us by showing that the echoes cannot come from everywhere if they are not true. The joy of this wonderful book is not its denial of the truths of our perfectionism but the writer's delight in the greater truths that drown the echoes of our self-doubt in a voice of love far greater." (Dr. Bryan Chapell, President, Covenant Theological Seminary)
About the Author
Dr. Richard Winter, husband and father of four grown children, is a psychotherapist, counselor and professor of practical theology at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. A native of Britain, he trained in medicine and psychiatry in England and has lived in the United States since 1992. His books include Still Bored in a Culture of Entertainment
and Perfecting Ourselves to Death