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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Difference

If ... God doesn’t make mistakes

Then ... everything God makes is perfect, amazing, beautiful, praiseworthy, and holy.

I know a lot of people who are really down on themselves. That’s Sad.
I know a lot of people who are really down on others. That’s Bad.
Today it is customary to build oneself up by pointing out fault in others.

There are two very different uses for the word “fault.”
The 1st meaning is “a defect or imperfection; a flaw.”
The 2nd meaning is “responsibility for failure or a wrongful act, a misdeed or transgression.”

In the simplest language, then, a “fault” is either something wrongfully done for which one is responsible (meaning #2), or something fundamentally wrong with a person, period (meaning #1).

People who are really down on themselves are inclined to believe that they are defective, that they are a mistake. They are not. But it is SAD that they feel that way.

People who are really down on others are inclined to communicate that there is something defective about them, that they are flawed. They are not. But it is BAD that they are treated as throw-away mistakes, not made by God.

The Challenge ... (a very old one at that) is to both be able to receive criticism and give criticism on the level of meaning #2 without attacking or feeling attacked on the level of meaning #1.

Meaning #1
“Fault” has a sibling named “Shame.” They are the henchmen of the Devil convincing the world (and doing a pretty good job of it right now) that God made mistakes everywhere. Perhaps they have also convinced you of your unworthiness (which of course is a lie)

Look at yourself. Look at others. And say, “God made me/God made you. No defect, no flaw. There is nothing in me or you, in and of ourselves, to be ashamed of. I am/you are not a mistake.”

Meaning #2
So, if God didn’t make mistakes, where do mistakes come from? Mistakes don’t come from God. They come from God’s human creations (perfect in their being) who do imperfect things.

“Blame” and “Guilt” are also siblings. But they are the servants of God. Their job is to address the horrors of human behavior while yet preserving the splendor of created worth. “Guilt” and “Blame” focus on the wrong. They assign responsibility, encourage repentance and restitution, and assist those wishing to do so to adjust their behavior to better reflect their created splendor.

The Difference ... it’s yours to make.

Find, love, and affirm the admirable, the God-perfection, in everyone (meaning #1)

Where there is wrong, address it with vigor, but as one who is also wrong, for only God is perfect (meaning #2)

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