Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Accepting Limitations

Accepting my limitations, possibly even embracing them, has been what I have come to see as a developmental task, perhaps a spiritual discipline, over the past year. 

It's hard, it really is, to accept our limitations. Especially because we are taught to believe we don't have any. We can be anything we want to be. If we can believe it, we can achieve it. Don't let anything get in the way of your dreams. Do more, try harder. Just do it. 

And yet, we can't. We can't be everything to everybody. There is so very much in life that we have absolutely no power over. Our lives cannot be a trajectory of success upon success, though it seems like some have certainly cracked that code. We can't do it all.

Peter Scazzero says, "Often we have larger fantasies and wishes for ourselves than our real lives can support. As a result, we work frantically trying to do more than God intended. We burn out thinking we can do more than we can." 

And sometimes those fantasies and wishes aren't coming from within. There are so many pressures out there. Pressures from work, community, family, friends. Pressure from culture in general. Pinterest. Instagram. Facebook. Photoshop. Motivational videos. Fitbits. And on and on. The pressure to be the best, or even a mediocre, worker, spouse, parent, child, friend, neighbor, citizen. To have the fit body and the classy house and the happy clients and the full bank account and the satisfied spouse and the thriving kids and, in some circles, the effective ministry and the proper spiritual disciplines and the right theology all the while keeping the peaceful demeanor and having no needs....DANG! It is all too much. 

Some people seems wired to do it all. And to do it all well. Most are not. So much goes in to your ability to perform be it genetics, temperament and personality and wiring, family of origin, life experiences, training and education, passions, priorities, circumstances. The reality is that all of us have limits. Some of us more than others. 

And the reality is that we can't do it all. And nobody should expect us to. 

Peter Scazerro again states, "Getting off our thrones and joining the rest of humanity is a must for growing up. A part of us hates limits. We won't accept them. This is part of the reason why grieving loss biblically is such an indispensable part of spiritual maturity."

I've spent years beating myself up over my limitations. It was such an incredibly healing thing to hear that not only is it OK to have limitations, it is important to accept them. It is part and parcel of growing up. Learning to grieve what I cannot do is as important as learning to pursue what I can. I think I can get on board with that. 

1 comment:

  1. This is fabulous Ginny and so timely for me. Thanks so much for sending it to me.