Perfection, imperfection, and hope
Psalms 119:96, "To all perfection I see a limit, but your commands are boundless."
My friends, do you see that, in your own life, and in those around you? We need our eyes opened to see it especially in ourselves, and not just say "well, no one's perfect!", and in the process defend ourselves. A good question to ask ourselves is this: How does it affect me when I fail in something? If I lower God's perfect standard of perfection I will feel good about myself, and think that I'm much better than I truly am. And we know how hard it's to live around someone who thinks higher of themselves than they should.
So what's the reality check we need daily? Next phrase: "your commands are boundless". God's law is perfect, and it reaches to us all, every one of us. It tells us we need to have a perfect character like he does. But we never do, though we want to or might try to get it. God's perfect law demands perfection of all. Now you may want to use the first phrase and defend your imperfection by saying "I'm not perfect", or point to others and compare ourselves to feel like we're better than them. This attitude will make us want to control and change others, since we'll have pretty good thoughts about ourselves. But in Matthew 5:17 onward Jesus exposes our shallow understanding of God's holy and perfect commands and shows us that God is looking not only for the outward conformity to a command but to a heart transformed obedience. And warns us that our heart attitudes are seen very clearly by God the judge. So, I don't steel, kill and sleep around is not good enough defense before God, because he sees the truth about you and me.
Jesus ends the section with saying "Be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect." That's the ultimate command and call for the reality check, and to look elsewhere, to Jesus the man, who obeyed his own words of the call to perfection as he stated it in v.17 "I came to fulfill". And he as a man represented us sinful humans and obeyed God the Father perfectly in our place, because we could not.
So have you abandoned all hope in yourself to be perfect? And have you found all hope in Jesus Christ who obeyed God to the point of death perfectly, in your place? Where's your hope? Where's your trust, my friend? Jesus Christ is not a fiction of imagination, the Bible, the history and the millions of changed lives point to him as the risen Christ, the living and coming Lord and King.