Grateful for My Mistakes

A few weeks ago, on a Monday, I made a poor decision at work. I chose to release some software before it had been thoroughly tested. Though it was working fine in our building, other locations weren’t using it yet. The worst case scenario? Other locations would be unable to send our products out the door — all due to faulty software.

Well, that’s exactly what happened.

Tuesday morning, I learned other locations had big problems, taking them down for an entire day. And it was all my fault. My mistakes added up to a big mess, and now I needed to clean it up.

In fact, it took me all week to put out the fires I started and undo the problems I created. Ouch.

I was noticeably sad for causing my team members so much frustration with my bad software. Mistake or not, I desire to enhance the efforts of others — not cripple their efforts! The last thing I want to do is frustrate others.

My friend, a coworker, tried to cheer me up and downplay my actions. That was as good a time as any to share what I am learning now.

I told him I’m learning to be grateful for my mistakes and faults, because they constantly remind me how much I need God. If everything I touched turned to gold and I never screwed up, why would I ever need God? My perfection, then, would keep me from God.

Instead, I’m pretty messed up, and my mistakes show me how much I can’t make it on my own. How much I need to rely on Him.

And although I hate making mistakes and want to avoid them, I can be thoroughly grateful for my mistakes with this perspective.

Who is closer to God — the one who does everything right, or the one who messes up constantly?