Tuesday, September 4, 2012
At my first job after graduating from college, we would have parties at the drop of the hat. I love cooking, as you know, and I enjoyed making dishes and trying new recipes for the events. I liked the compliments I received on my cooking, and being asked for the recipe was always a great feeling. When I moved offices at the University, all my old coworkers told my new coworkers that I was a great cook. Do you know that the first three dishes I made for my new coworkers didn't turn out. I was embarrassed. Here I was with a reputation of being a good cook, and every thing I prepared was a disaster.
My husband is an expert at Saturday breakfast. He makes a fantastic omelet. The girls love his homemade waffles and pancakes. There is a scramble he does for breakfast burritos that is just heavenly. Every Saturday that we are home, he and the girls let me sleep in and they fill the house with music, laughter, and wonderful smells. This past Saturday he was whipping up his scramble with sausage, potatoes, and peppers for the burritos. We didn't have much cheese and he looooooves cheese on his burritos. I let him have what was left and we sat down to dig in. That's when I noticed there were no eggs scrambled in. Should I say something? It was still pretty good, but did he forget or was it intentional. He soon noticed and it was NOT his intention to leave out the fluffy eggs...that is the main part of a breakfast burrito. We laughed at the mistake. He has made this dish hundreds of times, how did he forget the eggs?
No matter how much of an expert we are at something, there will still make mistakes. There will be recipes that don't turn out as planned, projects that get behind schedule, writings or speeches that aren't interpreted the way they were meant, things that are unintentionally forgotten, and the list goes on.
How do we react when we make mistakes?
I tend to break down. When I know I have messed up, I beat myself up to the ends of the earth and back. There are two mistakes that are still fresh (one of which involves me forgetting something which I usually never do), and I am still having a hard time processing them. But I am learning that my reaction to my mess ups are more important than my actual mistakes. I have two little girls that are learning from this mama by watching my every move and reaction. When I react negatively to my mistakes, I am teaching them to react negatively as well. We are not perfect. We hear that phrase often, but do we give our own selves grace when those imperfections come through. We are also often told to learn from our mistakes, and that is something I need to visibly do in order for my girls to learn the importance of this process.
I don't want to raise perfectionist. I want to raise girls who understand they will mess up, but they must still love themselves and forgive themselves; it is not ever necessary to dwell on the mistakes. They are not going to get everything right on every single test...and it will be ok. They will not always win the game or the prize...and it will be ok. Everything doesn't always go as we would hope...and it will be ok.
God accepts us just as we are. We are not to abuse the grace He extends us, but we are thankful for the forgiveness He always has waiting for us when we ask. We must learn to forgive ourselves and teach our children to forgive themselves when the mess ups in this life occur. I may never be an "expert" at anything, but I hope I can have expertise in being grateful for the exact way God made me...imperfections and all.
"Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us" Titus 3:5a