Saturday, October 20, 2012

Dirty Laundry List

Here are two really good options for how to have endless blog content: either be an expert on something or be a failure at a lot of things.

In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m the second one.

No, I mean it. As I was looking through entries to find ones I wanted to include on my Blog Birthday Top Ten List, I realized that many of my posts are about all the ways I mess up.

Here is a short list of some of the personal weaknesses and failures I’ve talked about. See any you can identify with? Doubt some of them really describe me? Read on, friend. Read on.

I am . . .

Generally a Jerk: (Tiny Heresies, Little Sins)
Afraid of Grace: (Low-Fat Grace)
Socially Awkward: (The Art of Accepting a Compliment
A Control Freak: (Learning the Hard Way)
Emotionally Needy: (Compass Hearts)
An Approval Seeker: (Living for Applause)
Self-deceived and a Compulsive Liar: (Just kidding. If this was true, then you wouldn’t be able to believe any of the other faults I identified in myself.)

One thing I’m always afraid of is that I’ll turn this blog to turn into some kind of personal diary where I keep everyone updated on my spiritual progress or lack of progress. Hopefully, there is some universal point I can make, or something about the examples from my life that you can learn from. If these type of posts ever become either unrestrained self-bashing or pointless rambling about myself, please let me know (and I mean that).

If you looked through the list of qualities and decided that you are now going to have a successful blogging career—because who can’t come up with a long list of their own faults?—keep in mind that it’s not enough to be your average, run-of-the-mill failure.

You can write about mistakes you make in very eloquent language and never do anything about them. You can even acknowledge that you have certain ongoing struggles and decide not to fight them. In fact, sometimes the fact that you’re aware of them makes them easier to ignore. “Oh that? Well, that’s always been my personal weakness. What can we do? Sin nature and stuff.” I don’t want to go there either.

At the same time, I am human, and I’ll keep making mistakes. I’ll keep finding character flaws that I need to work on. In most of these posts, though, I hope you can see a progression from the problem to the solution. In a lot of these areas, especially the ones I wrote about several months ago, I know I’m improving (although sometimes unbearably slowly). I guess I should amend my first statement. The key to having material for a blog isn’t just being a failure. It’s being a failure-in-progress.

So if you’re not perfect, good. We can be friends. You can teach me things, and maybe I can teach you a few too.

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