Gratitude Day 527
Tues., Oct. 27, 2020
1 Timothy 6:11 – Timothy, you are God’s man, so run from all these errors. Instead, chase after true holiness, justice, faithfulness, love, hope, and tender humility.
Oh, how I wish that I would TRULY learn from my lessons.
Truth? Sometimes it takes more than one trip around the block for me to figure something out. I find myself making the same mistakes over and over and over. You’d think at some point I’d figure this our and change my behavior. Right?
A couple weeks ago, I shared “When Mistakes Happen – Part 1.” Rather than share all my lovely mistakes in one setting, I promised to share some more mistakes in Part 2. And here we are. More of those areas that I just can’t quite seem to figure out.
The times I say I will do something … but don’t. I was raised with the understanding if you said you were going to do something, you do it.
Period. No excuses.
Most of the time, I follow through. There are times when I have moved heaven and earth to get something done. But in all honesty, there are the times when I don’t. Why? It’s something that I know will be more difficult. Or it will take a lot of time. I don’t feel that I have the energy right then. Or other things simply feel more important.
When others are counting on you, you need to follow through. When we don’t then this leads to disappointment. Lack of trust. Others questioning if they can trust you.
It’s just easier to get it right from the get-go and follow through. It creates much fewer headaches, defending and explanations.
The times I tell pesky little white lies. My guess is that most of us have used little white lies more often than we’d care to share. You know, those little embellishments of the truth. Or not sharing all the information you are aware of. Or enhancing the information for our advantage.
I become leery when someone says, “We ALWAYS do it ….” Or “I’m ALWAYS the one …” Seriously. Always?
Probably not. It may FEEL like always, but the truth can be different.
Often, I use the white lie method when I either want to make myself look better or I don’t want to fully disclose information to another person. I convince myself that those pesky little white lies are for the benefit of the other person. What they don’t know will actually be helpful for them.
Until my white lie gets caught. Then it’s no longer fun and can be embarrassing.
Or we put someone else in an awkward situation. As much as I’d like to think I’m protecting others with white lies, ultimately, I’m really protecting myself. And then, what are we protecting ourselves from?
When in doubt, tell the truth. Not white lies.
The times I get involved when it would be best to stand on the sideline. When there’s a disagreement between two people or two groups of people, it’s easy to want to swoop in and fix it. Often, bringing a third party into the situation only diffuses the original problem in having both parties come to the third-party soliciting support for their position. This is called triangulation and a strategy that is highly unproductive. When the two conflicting parties are off-loading on a third party and basically requesting this third party to side with them, the ultimate situation only leads to disaster. And the third person feels caught in the middle.
Rather than inserting ourselves into the middle of a mess, let the other two groups simply figure it out themselves.
The times I stood on the sidelines and didn’t enter the game … and should have. There are the rare instances when standing on the sidelines really doesn’t help the situation. This is not the normal, go-to course of action. And should be used only when it’s clear there is no other option.
Sometimes, I simply don’t want to get caught in the middle. I don’t want to pick a side. It’s easier to remain neutral and allow others to figure it out.
Once in a while, a mediator is needed. Or maybe a bridge-builder. These aren’t incredibly fun times. We can embrace the opportunity, or we can ignore it. It’s our choice.
The times I depend upon myself more than I depend upon God. Of all my egregious mistakes, this is the most common and most hurtful. I have made this mistake a million times … and continue to time and time again. I think that I know more about myself, a situation or what the best result would be without ever consulting God. I don’t take time to really listen or see how the situation fits into the bigger picture.
Really, it’s not difficult to fix this mistake. It’s as easy as pausing, breathing and asking God to come into a specific situation and give you wisdom. But too often, we keep rolling along, oblivious to what God may have to say on the subject.
When God becomes part of the solution, we discover new possibilities. When God is part of the equation, we no longer have to do it all. When God joins the team, the best coach is already present.
It’s up to me, you, us to make sure God was invited to the party to begin with. When God’s on the guest list, I think we have no idea of what could really happen. Depending upon God and not ourselves opens up a world of possibilities … when we do it.
I know that I could write several more posts about the mistakes that I repeatedly make. And some day, maybe I will. I pray that these mistakes I find in my life will encourage you to think about see where you are letting mistakes keep you from being the best version of yourself you can ever be. Instead, replace your mistakes with true holiness, justice, faithfulness, love, hope, and tender humility. And watch what God will do.
For a God that overlooks my mistakes more quickly than I do myself, I am grateful.
Dear God – It’s not fun to be honest about our mistakes. Yet identifying our growing edges allows for us to see where You can make a real difference. Thanks for accepting us just the way we are, warts and all. Amen.
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