I am not perfect. Nowhere near it. But that is okay.

I make mistakes. I fall flat on my face. But that is okay.

I say the wrong thing. I make the wrong choice. But that is okay.

Because it isn’t the falling that matters. Everyone falls. Some people do it quietly so no one notices. Others set off a 21 gun salute so that the entire world sees their shame. Everyone lies. Everyone breaks promises. Everyone finds themselves doing things they swore they never would. Everyone hurts other people. That’s part of life and part of allowing other people to come into contact with you. Because we are all broken.

I am a glorious ruin, just like every other person who walks this planet. None of us is perfect. But at the end of the day, it is the people who get back up and try again who earn my respect. That is the type of person I want to be. Not the type of person who wallows in her guilt and continues to let others tell her what a screw up she is. But the type of person who stands back up and says “I messed up and for that I am deeply sorry. But now we have to keep on moving.”

I am not proud of decisions I made in the past. But I am proud of how I have handled myself since then. Making me feel guilty for things is not hard. There will always be something I could have done better and if any of those things is pointed out to me, I tend to beat myself up for them. But I have realized that that helps no one. I have realized that just because I am not groveling and whipping myself with chains that it doesn’t make my repentance and sorrow any less real. I don’t have to prove to people how sorry I am by completely putting my life on hold and staying in bed for weeks. In fact, I think that these things are merely putting on a show.

Repentance means doing what you can to ensure that the bad thing you did doesn’t happen again. And that is what I have been doing. I have been working to become the type of person that is strong enough not to let the wrong person near her. Who is strong enough to say “no” or “get the hell away from me”. Who is strong enough to risk hurting someone’s feelings or making them mad in order to do what is right. Who is strong enough not to allow alcohol to cloud her judgment. Who is strong enough to know when she is being lied to.

My identity is not in what I have done in the past. My identity is who I am – and am becoming – in Christ. I will not let past mistakes or labels define me. I will not let other people’s opinion of me become my reality. I *will* get back up and try again.

Why do we fall? In order to learn how to pick ourselves back up.

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