Every once in a while I come across a blog post that grabs hold of something so plain and simple about how I get in the way of my own success that I will pin it to the opening tabs on my browser, so that I can read it over and over. It gets to the point that I can just glance at the title of the tab and remind myself of the principle I am trying to embrace. This article "You're Never Going to Be Fully Ready", by Shauna Niequist is one of those articles I draw strength from daily. It has sat there patiently among my home tabs on my browser for months, waiting for those words to finally click for me.
[I would love to insert here the beautiful serene photo from Shauna's post or any Google Image search of two companionable paddle boarders launching out onto a lake , but I am pretty vague on how to honor photo credits and want to avoid copyright infringement that my cut & paste skills might allow. Those photographers launched out into the deep unknown, not being fully ready, and I don't want to diminish their ventures by taking from them without compensation. Not being fully ready to illustrate my thoughts, I will paddle on with the wordsmithing.]
We may never actually feel completely ready to handle the new venture in front of us "flawlessly", but that is very good news! We don't have to be, because we are not going to perform flawlessly the first time out if, in fact, we are doing something new. New is thrilling, intimidating! New is great!
"But I don't know how to do new!"
That is completely okay and good and right. That is why we are calling this "new". So, now, take a step of faith. If you have felt compelled or called by Him to do this new thing-- He Himself will certainly meet you there and give you what you need to:
"take another step",
"swallow your pride and ask for help",
Whatever else you may need to do the new, He Himself will meet you midstride.
Begin. Dare. Practice. Do the New with untried, unproven hands moving in faith. I used to tell my kids all the time, "You don't have to be perfect. That's God's job." over and over, trying to encourage them to make the imperfect mark and the next one and the next one on the pristine sheet of lined paper--in each case, the battle with perfectionism reared it's head with their earliest attempts at penmanship and continued well into adolescence-- and to call each attempt good and now it was enough that they were trying their best.
That inner struggle besets so many of us. Perhaps, it even "so easily besets" all of us. How many big things and small things were never tried or even seriously considered because we were intimidated by the "No! Can't! Won't! What if?" of self-doubt?
I don't get to be perfect and, what's more,
I don't need to be perfect.
That's God's job.
Being perfect in love and grace and provision and every good thing, God Himself is ready and waiting to go with me and do New Things!
Shauna, thank you for the encouragement to embrace the process of learning, being fully alive and fully human in being imperfect and absolutely reveling in it.
BE IMPERFECT TODAY!! Be fully alive and fully human!!
DO SOMETHING COMPLETELY NEW!
Being perfect in love and grace and provision and every good thing, HE is ready and waiting to go with me and do New Things!