Faith

On Failure and Getting Back Up

I often feel like a total dirtbag.

It usually is because I say/write/do something careless and then I realize it too late.

Once the words have been said.

Once the text has been sent.

Once the mistake has been made.

A few such things have happened this past week.

A week ago it was Father’s Day. I knew this, as we had already celebrated twice, but that particular morning it didn’t cross my mind at all. My husband was preparing food to BBQ, which he does quite well. I mean it tastes amazing... But it often lacks in the health department.

And without thinking twice I decide: This is the day that I am going to bring up my concerns about how unhealthy I feel and blame it on him.

Really, I am just stressed about my weight as I have gained 15 pounds since COVID-19 happened. And it’s easier to blame others than to look in the mirror.

Stupid.

On a good day, it is a stupid thing to say. But it wasn’t just a good day, it was Father’s Day. And not only was he making DELICIOUS food on Father’s Day, he was joyfully making food. No complaints, it is what he loves to do.

But I chose to tear him down and five minutes into my rant, it dawns on me: Just shut up already.

So I close my mouth. And then in the 10 seconds of awkward silence, I realize – with horror – that today is a day to celebrate the man I was just criticizing.

I apologize immediately. I call the kids to the table to bless him, and say what they love about the man I was just tearing down.

I tell him what I appreciate about him: He never criticizes me.

The rest of the morning I feel terrible. I want to crawl into a hole and stay there. I want to cover up my face and hide away. I consider having my tongue surgically removed. I wonder if there’s anyone out there who can be as two-faced as me.

Because friends, this isn’t the first time something like this has happened.

How does one move on from feeling low? How does one reconcile themselves to the fact that to the core of their being, they are not what they want to be, what they mean to be, what they claim to be?

I’ll tell you how I get back up: Jesus.

Jesus.

It’s why he needed to die on the cross. Because of me. Because of my hurtful words, my careless tongue.

This is what faith in Jesus is all about. Knowing our true state, that we are not good enough and running to a Father who loves us anyways. As we repent, as we turn to him, an incredible thing happens.

He covers us up. He covers our sin with his blood.

I can come out of my hole, because he entered that hole of shame for me! My life becomes “hidden” in Christ.

But in the same way, I must never claim anything good inside myself as “who I am”. For I know very well who I am apart from Christ: Just a shameful girl, hiding in a hole.

I am tired of messing up. Tired of sin. Tired of my words getting me into trouble.

“Who will rescue me from this body, that brings death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!” Romans 7:24-26

10 thoughts on “On Failure and Getting Back Up

  1. Thank you for this post, Heather. Been there, done that lots of times. Maybe some day the Spirit will catch me before angry-blamey words spew, and I’ll learn to laugh at my foolish sin. Praying for His guidance because clearly I can’t mature in faith by myself.
    -C.D.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I used to think, maybe when I’m 20… maybe when. I’m 30, I’ll have this under control. Now hoping that maybe by the time I’m 40… lol. Yet it keeps me humble and clinging to his grace each day!

      Like

  2. Sometimes, the tongue wags too much and sometimes it doesn’t move at all. I think I have more trouble with the latter. But we all struggle. Thank you for the great day today Heather. You and your family are lovely! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow. We are so similar it’s scary. I do this so often and regret it so quickly afterwards. I’ve lost friendships because of my big mouth and I’ve picked fights with my husband on the weirdest days too. I also have a problem with being a keyboard warrior. I get so mad at people and just shred them with words because that’s what I do…I write. I need to use my words for good, though, not for being a jerk. I heard a sermon today that reminded me that God is still working on me. One step at a time for you and for me. Thanks for this post today. I sure needed it to help me feel less like a shameful girl hiding in a hole.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for sharing Lisa! I’m glad you could relate. It seems like God is using this very struggle to keep me humble. Every time I start thinking I’m “good” on my own, it happens again. And while God doesn’t want us living in shame, he DOES want us leaning on him. It’s a painful process, but slowly I’m learning to keep my mouth shut. When I do say something I regret, I know what separates a Christain is repentance. I try not to stall but immediately ask forgiveness. It’s humbling, sure, but it’s also I good reminder for the next time I’m tempted to open my big mouth!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, Heather, I would like to remove my tongue, too! It’s such a long, slow process to tame it. 😦

    Have you ever heard of Saint Francis de Sales? He has a quote (I included it in this post from January: https://saralivingfree.com/2019/12/27/new-years-less-condemnation-more-grace/) that helps me pick myself up out of my stupid, stupid flapping gums moments. The best part of his quote is:

    “Say to your soul: ‘There, we have made a mistake, but let’s go on now and be more careful.’ Every time you fall, do the same.” – Saint Francis de Sales

    Liked by 1 person

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