Those who can’t seem to get it together are better off than those who think they have a good grip. I would rather sit next to the guy who smells like pot than the woman who looks down on him. I would rather talk to someone with a million questions than listen to someone who has it all figured out. Once you’ve lost the capacity to learn, you’re dead weight.
We all have weaknesses, addictions and tendencies. If you’re not being real, you don’t know what they are. If you can’t spot them, you can’t sandbag against them. The best way to find your weak points is to live without fear of failure while still aware that you’ll fail. When the bomb goes off, trace the wire back to the trigger. Your own sin can be a huge asset when you’re trying to choose where to stand.
Everyone has a tendency toward certain sins. Do you know what yours are? Instead of feeling defeated by your failures, be empowered by the knowledge.
An alcoholic will always be an alcoholic, but he doesn’t have to drink. He can find his triggers and make a plan. If he knows he’s an alcoholic who binges when stressed, he can refer to his escape plan and fight against his natural tendency. This doesn’t mean he’ll never slip. It means he’s got an extra rail between him and the fall.
I never knew I had the capacity to cheat until I cheated. I thought it would be a lot harder to cross that bridge. Before experiencing that failure, there were a lot of behaviors that I never would have seen as foreplay to the consummation of adultery. I knew I was a good person and I saw my behavior as harmless and innocent.
Now that I know where my weaknesses are, a lot of ‘innocent’ behavior doesn’t look as innocent to me. My boundaries are further out and I can spot danger quicker. I would be a fool to say I would never do it again. Not seeing my ability in the first place was one of my biggest mistakes. However, I can acknowledge that I’ve put more distance between me and that pitfall.
If you deny your weakness or are unaware of it, then you will not know where the traps and triggers are and you will not have an escape plan. Those in denial will always be bruised because they’re more scared of labels than of constantly falling into the same hole.
It’s like a blind man refusing to admit that he’s blind. He claims to be able to see clearly, so when he destroys things in his path, he has no excuse and will get no help. If he can’t see clearly, then he won’t clean up his messes properly and will be despised for that, too. If he would realize and admit that he was blind, he would get more help, compassion and mercy. Those who claim to see clearly are expected to see clearly. Anything claiming to be perfect is judged against perfection.
“If you were really blind, you would be blameless, but since you claim to see everything so well, you’re accountable for every fault and failure.” -John 9:41
- Do you know where your weaknesses are?
- Do you have an escape route?
- What can you share with others that may help them learn from your mistakes?