Wednesday, September 4, 2013

When did being good at something become a crime?

 

You know, I like grace. And I like knowing that I don’t have to –and I can’t be perfect.

But my generation + others have turned this into some game of who can’t do the worst in life but still be alright. It’s a game of who can squeeze by just doing things half-way and still be likeable.

In fact, there is one SUPER popular blog (it’s a mom-ish blog, and yes, yes, I do read mom blogs on occasion) and I honestly do not know why people like this woman so much.  Her whole blog is about basically how much she sucks at life and is the worst mom ever. AND is proud of it. It’s a whole blog  centered around how much she fails as a mom, Christian, wife, blah, and it’s cool. It’s like, “you are the worst at everything, and you’re popular, so that validates my bad-ness.” I call it the World’s Best Underachiever blog. Actually, I’ve never said that out loud, but I’ve thought it. (Shh…I don’t actually know her in real life…so if you’re reading this, it’s likely not you…)

I’m not saying I’m perfect. Not at all. I burn stuff in the oven practically every time I use it. I fail tests. I wear ugly clothes 95% of the time. I have a short temper. I don’t like to talk about ‘how I feel.’ I’m too quick to judge. I don’t say the right things. I’m impatient.

And I’m not ashamed of those things, but I’m not proud of them.

But we’ve come into this weird thing, where we’re just settling with how we are.

I’m not saying we need to scramble to  become ‘the best we can be’ and all that jazz. But what I am saying is we need to keep pushing forward and to keep working. Be happy where you’re at, but don’t get stuck there.

There’s a difference between contentment and complacency.

And let me tell you something that will blow some people’s minds.

You are not perfect.

Seriously.

You have flaws.

And so do I.

But we’re in this new-agey sort of belief that hey, it’s fine to be an absolute wreck of a person, because you know, grace.

Grace.

Grace does not mean doing whatever the heck you feel like.

Grace does not mean you are okay the way you are.

Grace does not mean not changing.

 

Grace is the fact that we can’t be perfect. It’s impossible. And that’s okay, but that does not mean that you should be complacent. It doesn’t mean you can continue doing what you want.

But this is America, and you’re perfect.

WRONG AGAIN.

But back to this blog, this woman PROUDLY boasts about how bad she is.

At cooking, at being a mother, a wife, a Christian, a friend, and it’s awesome, because grace.

No.

Grace is what we receive IN SPITE OF our imperfections. Not because of them. Grace is not having to live ashamed of things you have done. But it’s not saying that what you have done wrong is alright.

So why do people all yell about how bad they are at everything? I’m not saying we should wave flags with all of our accomplishments on them, no, if you do that, I’ll smack you.  And I’m not saying we should hide our mistakes and pretend we are perfect. That’s being fake. And I despise that too, but that’s another rant for another day.

But why are we so proud of how imperfect we are?

Why are people boasting, screaming, shouting their imperfections?

And I’m not saying it’s wrong to be bad about something and make jokes about that, no. That’d be super hypocritical of me to say that.

But what I am saying is this:

It is OKAY to be good at something.

Seriously.

And it’s okay to talk about it. And to tell people your accomplishments. And to actually embrace the fact that you do something well. And use that something to do something awesome.

And you know what else is okay?

To work to improve that skill.

You know who is/was awesome at singing/performing? Julie Andrews.  (‘was’ because she lost her singing voice from throat surgery). And seriously, she and her family knew she was talented. But they didn’t say, “that’s great Julie, you’re perfect how you are, no need to work to improve yourself. You’re perfect.” No. She took voice lessons to work to improve upon the talent she was born with.

But you know, if we’re good at something, we have to be the best, right?

And I think that’s a lot of where we mess up.

Because of insecurity.

If I claim/act like/show/am not ashamed of the fact that I am good at something…well…people will know…and if they know…they can see when I do something wrong…

SO THE SOLUTION! Act like you’re bad at everything. Because that way---it doesn’t matter! If you claim to be a terrible tuba player—and then drop your tuba in concert, it’s fine, because, eh, you never said you were any good anyway.

BUT if you share with people your love of the tuba, tell them what you’ve been working on, and ARE GOOD AT IT, and then you miss a note during your mad tuba solo, well, then people will know that you, Mrs. Perfy McPerfect IS NOT PERFECT.

Shut. Up. No. Way.

So the solution for making sure no one ever sees our mistakes ever, is to blow up all the things we are bad at. Pretend we’re not good at anything. So to hide our downfalls, we proclaim them from the rooftops.

AND PLEASE. I am not saying we should hide our mistakes. And I’m not saying that we should scream our talents.

But when did being good at something become a crime?

Being a recipient of grace means you’re not allowed to be good at something.

Really.

It’s okay to be good at something. Promise.