“Somebody has to start. Somebody has to step forward and do what is right, because it is right.” – Dalinar Kholin, The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
We all fail sometimes. Right? Or is it just me who never seems to live up to who I should be?
I messed up yesterday. I crossed a line that I shouldn’t have. I did something that was wrong – and that I knew was wrong – all because I wanted something.
How disgustingly selfish.
It wasn’t some horrifying crime. Not according to the arbitrary scale we use to weigh severity of wrongness. I didn’t murder or rape anybody. I didn’t even steal something.
I didn’t technically even say anything untrue. I simply didn’t divulge all the information I possessed. A little white lie. That’s all it was.
And that’s what pisses me off.
Because if I can’t be trusted with the little things, why should I ever be trusted with big things?
I don’t know if this is common or not, but I have always felt like I was put here on earth – in this time, in this place – to do great and terrible things. Not terrible as we would use the word, but as Tolkien would. Worldshaking things. Things that make people feel Atlas give a mighty heave beneath them. I am here to move mountains, and I will someday.
“When I think of destiny, I don’t think of a predetermined fate you can’t escape, but rather some sort of final goal. Something you work towards your entire life.” – Pyrrha Nikos, RWBY
But sometimes I wonder. Why has it not begun yet? Why has the ability to shake the world not entered my grasp? I’m ready. I feel ready. I put in the work, I strive daily to be the best man I can be, and I want it. I want it so bad it makes me clench up inside. I want to change things for people, to make this place better in drastic ways. I know I’m destined for it. Why am I still denied the pebble I need to start an avalanche?
And I think I know the answer now: I don’t deserve it.
With great power comes great responsibility. It’s ridiculously cliche, but that doesn’t make it untrue. The power to change things is terrifying and should be entrusted only with overwhelming caution. That’s something we (as humans) have clearly forgotten.
But God hasn’t, and I’m grateful. Perhaps He doesn’t just want me to change things. He wants me to change things for the good.
At the end of the day, I don’t think either He or I can be sure that’s what will happen if I am afforded that destiny right now.
I can’t be trusted with it yet. I’m too broken and selfish to handle it well. That sucks, but it’s also fortunate. There are few things more terrifying than a man receiving power he’s not ready for. I knew the lie was wrong and I did it anyway. It was just an insignificant, tiny, infantile evil. But…
If we can’t be trusted with the small things, we can’t be trusted with the big things.
It’s that simple and that difficult.
So let’s try to be better. Every day. Not because we might get a payoff in the future, but because it is right. We’re human, and we’re going to mess up. But if we keep reaching for the vision, keep struggling to become that glittering ideal we always wished we could be, maybe someday we’ll look in a mirror and realize that’s who we’ve become.
Am I the only one who often let’s themselves down? Do you have a vision of who you’d like to be? Why can’t we ever seem to get there? Share your words of wisdom below.
I completely understand how you feel. I have struggled a lot with myself. I have learned through the fire that it is ok to be human. I had to go through a time of complete uncertainty, fear, and self doubt to find that sometimes I must give myself forgiveness. I had to decide and accept that I will make mistakes, but I couldn’t allow for those things to get in the way of who I want to be. To take the step of saying, “Yeah, I made a mistake. Now how do I go forth from it to become better?” Everyday is new and fresh. Everyday is a day to grow, make mistakes, and learn. I am no where near where I want to be, but I am taking each day to improve. It is always about taking things one step at a time.
Good luck and know you have support in your journey.
It’s nice to know that I’m not alone in this struggle, but I’m also glad to hear you feel peace in your daily progress. That’s all we can do. Put one foot in front of the other. Keep moving forward. Be better the next time. Thank you for the encouragement, Kayla, and good luck to you as well.
Hey! New reader, and this post spoke to me, so i thought I would chim in. Really struggling with this feeling lately, and worse is I’m a father of three and have made serious steps towards a lot of my dreams, and still feeling very successful. I think the problem is two fold. One the dreams are so big that they crumble under their own weight, I.e. Changing the world, and secondly in the process of achieving our goals we become a different person who may have different dreams, and ideas about it all. More over, it’s the sense that to really accomplish huge things you have to be sort of crazy, megalomaniac, and that’s not always a good thing or something we really want to do/be. Just two cents, from a stranger. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you for the input! We do change as we move forward, which is always important to remember. Oftentimes it seems like the only people changing things are the ones that go off the deep end, true. But I believe we can change things by example and by being people of integrity as well.
Thanks for stopping by to give me your thoughts! Glad to have you.
I know exactly that feeling you’re talking about. In the past when my failures seemed to be piled upon my shoulders, it would seem that there was no way that God could use me because of my mistakes. But even in those hard times I would cry out to Him and stay in the Word. And God opened up opportunities where I could serve Him in short mission trips and as a counselor at church camps. All the time that I was in those positions I felt inadequate, but God would show me how He could use me even when I felt like a mess. As long as you’re seeking obedience to God’s Word and God’s will, it may seem like you are just spinning your wheels going nowhere, but I’ve found that as I now look back He was preparing me, shaping me, and had a plan all along. I currently have been going through Timothy Keller’s “God’s Wisdom for Navigating Life”, it is a daily devotion and study of Proverbs, and it has been deep and meaningful in reminding me of what God calls us to. I know Dakota that as you go through this time God is preparing you for the destiny that He has for you, and it may seem small and insignificant currently, one day you will be able to look back and see that despite your failures His plan was currently in motion. I pray that your path may be straight and that the next time the temptation for half truth comes you will be reminded of this post where you were open about failure and that the strength of God will help you overcome .
Thanks for sharing your experiences, David! Your encouragement is appreciated.