Tuesday, October 21, 2014
31 Days of Courage: The Courage Not To Get It All Right
It’s the plague of the first born.
OK, not just the first born, lots of other people too.
I was reading some of the comments of other folks involved in this 31 day challenge, and it struck me how we all have a bit of a different take on this crash writing bonanza.
Some people just decided to skip the weekends and are perfectly ok with that. Those bloggers are really relaxed and secure and are having a ball.
Some are finding it difficult to write on one topic and keep the quality of the content. They reach out to others for ideas and encouragement. They stumble about a little with complete authenticity regarding their struggles and successes.
And some, well probably mostly the first born crowd, sweat, take notes, determine to write a certain number of words every day, and never miss a day, no matter what.
Art (or in my case and my opinion, it’s more craft) imitates life. Every person has to find their groove and do what they are put together to do. But it’s not at all linear and clean. There are days when the whole thing flows like the Hudson down Mount Marcy, and those other days when it’s more like pick axing up the side of Mount Crumpit (who gets that reference?). Most of us will look back and say of the story of our lives “I wish I had written that bit a little differently” (or a lot differently), or “That paragraph was a complete mess…” or maybe “I’m done with with this story…I can’t get it right.”
And here’s where courage comes in to play. Because in this little microcosm of the 31 day challenge I have experienced all of these emotions through the tip of my “must get it all right” pen. It’s completely ridiculous to expect every day to be your buttoned up best. Maybe we’re tired, or the check engine light is back on in the car, or we've got the Coxsacki virus coming on…any of a myriad of the foibles of life that make our days less than ideal. Not to mention the downright earth shattering "work stoppages".
There is courage in saying with peace in our hearts:
I did my best today. Even if my best wasn't all that great.
You have nothing to prove, because you are loved by the One who approves of you exactly as you are.
With that comes freedom to find our way through failure and fallout, because we’re not working to be loved, but because we’re loved we’re working.
I promised myself when I joined these 31 days, that I would write for the One who has given me the love of communication and words. I really do love to write. Or should I say as Dorothy Parker said, “I love HAVING written”. But I admit I've got the first born tendancies. I always wish I'd done better.
There’s a freedom in not having to be great. To simply be and do for the sake of being and doing.
Whatever your life looks like, whatever strange turns, however many mundane stretches or confusing patches, press on. Do your best, even if today’s best isn’t as lovely as yesterday’s or tomorrow’s.
It’s a big story, and you aren’t the Author anyway. You’ll be amazed when you see how His grace and mercy edit the thing to make it a splendid chronicle in the end.
That was the point of the Jesus' best day...which was the same day as His worst day. He got it all right for our sakes.
Be brave enough to lay down your pride and know it’s ok not to get it all right.
Your first- born friend on the pilgrim road,