getting away from false failure

“May I be released from the bondage of false failure?

I wrote that prayer Tuesday morning. I had been thinking about the times I remember people and think of failure. Not theirs, mine. I remember some way I don’t think I accomplished some expectation I think they had. Or that I think someone else had for my interaction with that person. Or an expectation that I established for myself.

I know. You think I should write that paragraph more clearly. But maybe I can illustrate it from my first 15 minutes on Wednesday morning.

I got up. Within 5 minutes I realized that I forgot to pick up a rock on Tuesday. For the first time in three weeks, I had forgotten to pick up a fist-sized rock. Within 10 minutes, I realized that I published two posts on Wednesday morning. One, a tribute to my friend Chris, was supposed to be posted today. I scheduled it for the 14th. Then I changed the date to the 15th. And then I neglected to hit [update]. And then I didn’t know where my new favorite pen was.

I felt like I had failed three times over.

And I sat down in my morning coffee with God chair and read through my praying from Tuesday morning. And I saw my prayer: “May I be released from the bondage of false failure?” 

And I realized that I was in that bondage again. Forgetting to pick up a rock isn’t a failure. It isn’t a sin. It’s a project I established for myself (and you). Publishing two posts on the same day isn’t a failure. But in the moment, both of those events made me think that you will think less of me. And therein lies my bondage.

Do you know what I mean?

(Something I wrote about the pen problem: Portable routines)

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About Jon Swanson

Social media chaplain. Author of "Lent For Non-Lent People" and "A Great Work: A Conversation With Nehemiah For People (Who Want To Be) Doing Great Works." Writer of 300wordsaday.com. I help people understand. Understand some of the Bible. Understand what Lent can be about. Understand what it means to follow.

3 thoughts on “getting away from false failure

  1. talk about all things working together. I would have missed the moving tribute to Chris if you hadn’t written this today. Between pens and routines are you sure we aren’t distant relatives? 😉 I can so relate.

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  2. Oh and I can’t believe you mentioned jojo’s used to eat there all the time had completely forgotten about it.

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