Permission to Fail??
I remember being late one day for a therapy appointment. I was berating and condemning myself for screwing up so badly and was fearing that my therapist probably thought of me as a late person. And I'm not a late person. But she wouldn't know that because here I am showing up late to her office. When I finally got inside and we met up, of course I began to apologize and felt shame come over me but then she said something which grabbed my attention by the tatas. "It's okay, you're allowed to be late. You're human." Needless to say but I'll say it anyway, my mind was blown. I really don't remember ever being given permission to be late, which means being human, which means... *gasp*... not being perfect. I sort of short circuited after she said that. I'm allowed to be late? I'm allowed to not be perfect? This was and still is a strange concept but I'm trying to understand it more and more. I expressed how amazing it was to hear that and she went on to explain that it is perfectly human to make mistakes. To not be perfect.
Talk about a conundrum. Perfectly human? Human= makes mistakes. Perfect mistakes?? But mistakes are the opposite of perfection. Aren't they? Hmm. This is weird. I'm usually great at solving and figuring out riddles and brain teasers but this one is giving me a migraine. What does this "perfectly human" thing mean? Jesus was the only perfect human. Is the only perfect Being. So how does this work for me? I am baffled right now and don't exactly know how to continue with the rest of this post... Perfectly human. Does that mean that in making mistakes, I am embracing my humanity perfectly? I am fully walking in my humanness?? Hmm... Maybe my mistakes are there to point out the obvious, that I should not strive for perfection. I started this post a while back but saved it as a draft due to being super stuck on how to proceed. Today, as I return to it, I definitely feel that I am developing a better understanding. A different, although incomplete, outlook. For so long, I had never understood how to do something with excellence that wasn't perfect. How could excellence be separated from perfection? Well, here's how.
As I was sitting here dwelling on this, I believe God gave me a new perspective: that perfection is His standard of doing something right. And excellence is our, humanity's, standard of doing something right. In other words, perfect is when God does something right, excellence is when we do it. Does that make sense? God lives in a state of perfection and everything He does flows from that state. We live in a flawed world so even the good we do is only ok in comparison to God. We can not meet God's standard because He is that standard. He is perfect. We can only do our best which, at its highest, is excellence. But God doesn't look at us through the lens of our flawed excellence. He looks at us through the lens of His perfection, His completion and redemption in the Christ, so long as we have given Him that place in our lives. He doesn't hold us to the standard of being perfect, the way to which so many of us hold ourselves. He looks at us through Jesus and He sees us as flawless.
Okay, wow, this article really went in another direction than what I had in mind. Honestly, I didn't even know where I'd be going with this because the subject matter of this post is still very mind-blowing. I'm not even sure that I should upload this now because I am no where near done with the topic, or should I say God is no where near done. But this is all I have for now and as God gives me more revelation, I will make new posts. Am I the only one scratching my head over all of this?