Embracing Our Mistakes

I think if we are honest with ourselves we would admit that we don’t like to make mistakes.  The reality is this: we are probably going to make several mistakes each day.

Here is the crazy thing though.  We try incredibly hard to avoid making mistakes, and we enjoy having a laugh at other people’s expense when they make mistakes.

Here is an idea: Let’s embrace the fact that we are going to make mistakes.  Let’s actually talk about them so when others make mistakes, they feel less alone in their mistake.

Let me tell you about something that happened to me recently.  I get to coach part time at a private school in the city where I live.  I coach cross country, basketball, and distance runners in track.  At our district track meet I did three very silly things.

Seriously, as you read these three things, try to envision this in your head:

1. I dropped my large water bottle and spilled half of it in the bus, leaving puddles of water for athletes and coaches to walk through as they got on the bus.

2. During the coaches lunch, I accidentally knocked the package of cookies off the counter, and I literally wasted 2 dozen cookies (had to go in the trash).  The worst part was I did this in front of all the other coaches, not just my school, the whole district.

3. I get pretty excited when our kids are racing.  I run around the field cheering for them as they race around the track.  During one of the races, I was so focused on the athlete racing, that I did not see the kid sitting down on the field on his phone.  Needless to say, as I am running and cheering our athlete on, I completely wiped out.  It was very embarrassing, and painful I might add.

I did all three of these things in one day.  Here is the truth: I secretly hoped no one knew it was my water that spilled.  I secretly hoped I would not have to see some of those coaches again.  And I really secretly hoped that none of the kids on our team saw me fall, but guess what?  They did!

Social Media has given us an opportunity to present ourselves free from mistake.  Here is my perfect self and my perfect life!  Look at me!  Isn’t my post great?  Isn’t my life great?

That is just not reality.  The reality is we make mistakes, all of us, and we need to embrace this!  I was in the hall at the private school I coach at last week, and I watched a girl trip and fall.  While falling she dropped all of her school books.  She was very embarrassed.

What do you think I did?  Obviously, I helped her pick up her books, and I made sure she was okay.  That is not all I did though.  The Lord prompted me to tell her what happened to me at the district track meet.  Now she was able to see that she was not the only one who makes mistakes, and she could see that I was laughing at my ridiculous self.  It may seem silly, but I think it helped her realize that she is not alone in the making of mistakes.

Genesis 2:18 tells us that it is not good to be alone.  The only thing worse than knowing that you are going to mess up is feeling like you are alone in those mess ups.

What if we allowed the Lord to use our mistakes to help remove others’ aloneness?

What if we remembered that Jesus is the only “perfect” one?

What if we remembered we are not perfect in our performance, but we are seen as perfect by God if we are in Christ (Hebrews 10:14)?

Hey, these are just some things I have been pondering, and I thought you might want to ponder on them as well.

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