I keep trying to do things, and I keep failing.
My resolve weakens.
I can’t be bothered to resist anymore.
Whether it’s a healthy eating plan, or a no alcohol policy; an exercise regime or a decision to stop looking up exes on social media, I get all determined that things are going to be different. Usually I tell a few people about my new resolve. I’m excited about the changes I’m going to see in my life. I want people to cheer me on. I believe I can do it.
I maintain the change for a while and then I fail. I slip back into the bad habits I wanted to break.
When I fail in my intentions I don’t really want to talk to anyone about it. After a while I start to gather my resolve again. Something makes me realise that I don’t like the choices I’m making. Maybe I don’t feel good because of the junk I’m eating, or I feel sluggish in the morning because of the wine I drank the night before, or I read an article about how looking at people on facebook can essentially ruin your life, and I decided I’m going to get clean again.
This time I may tell someone. Not as many people as the last time, but someone.
Then the same thing happens and the cycle repeats.
The next time I ‘begin again’ I don’t tell anyone. I’m too embarrassed. I feel like a flake. I reckon they will all think I’m just a bit useless, lacking will power and discipline and maybe even the power of God in my life. I tell myself that those things are probably true of me.
They are not true. They are lies.
I’m currently on day 3 of trying to give something up. The longest I’ve ever made it to is day 10. Quite often I don’t even make it through day 1.
But the failure is the bit we can take for granted.
We all fail. No one keeps every resolution they’ve made. We all aim for things and don’t reach the target. That bit is unremarkable. That bit we should take as a given, and be neither surprised nor ashamed when it happens.
The amazing thing is that we try again.
And often we try again and again with no end to the ‘trying again’ in sight.
That is incredible. It shows resilience and determination and above all, hope.
We believe that things can be better, and we want to keep on trying to make that a reality, in our own lives and in the lives and circumstances of others.