Offer Yourself Grace
Getting in the car with three little kids is a lot harder than one might think. So many things to grab and remember as you are trying to walk out the door.
Keys, purse, phone, at least two pairs of shoes because you know they don’t have them, sippy cups, binky, diaper bag, snacks— OK, well that’s all I can carry—oh yeah, my drink! Needing that extra hand, you sit your cup down, for one moment, to forget it the second it leaves your grasp.
Then off you go, and BAM! It’s gone! “Oh man! I really wanted that!” Too late now. As you see it fly down the road into the gutter.
Well, a coke is one thing, but what about my husband’s mini iPad!? Wade had just bought himself a new iPad, and as he was walking out the house, with kids in tow, he sat his new toy on the hood of his car. With dread in his heart a few hours later, realizing what he had done, he set out to find if what he feared was true. After searching for a long while, he finds his new toy in a busy intersection, smashed to pieces!
He was mad, to say the least. Mad it was wasted money, mad it couldn’t be fixed, mad he hadn’t really got to enjoy it at all, but mostly just mad at himself for being so careless!
We all get this way from time to time; careless about what we are doing. We get distracted only to find out, after the fact, what a mess we made. At those times do you beat yourself up? Do you let it ruin your day because of a careless mistake?
Could you offer grace? Yes, grace to yourself for making a mistake? Seems like an odd request, but forgiving ourselves appears to be really hard. We don’t like to mess up. It makes us feel stupid, inadequate and forgetful.
My son verbally calls himself a “dummy” when he messes up. Angry that he, once again messed up, he begins to self-condemn. He moves from making a simple mistake to calling himself the mistake!
As adults I think we do this in more subtle ways. Yet, our self-talk, name calling, and self-defeat, is destructive all the same.
If we let our mistakes control our thinking of who we are, we have already been defeated. We might as well pack our bags and just head to the couch with a gallon of ice cream.
God offers us grace. We offer grace to others. Let’s try to offer grace to ourselves every once in a while.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Cor. 12:9).
God made each of us and loves us so much that He sent His one and only Son to die on the cross for our sins, our mistakes (John 3:16). Yes, we need to repent of our sin and call on Him to forgive us. But once we do, let’s remember that He cast them as far as the east is to the west (Psalm 103:12). Therefore, we can move past those mistakes and move forward to what God has in store for us!
Ultimately, we are weak individuals who will make mistakes, a lot of mistakes! Let’s lighten up on ourselves and offer some grace!