I have a confession.
I’m a member of the spelling police.
If there’s one thing sure to annoy me, it’s reading ‘you’re’ when I should be reading ‘your’.
“Unbelievable! That sentence doesn’t even make sense,” I mutter to myself indignantly as I sit on my hands to prevent myself taking a pen and correcting an official letter or document I’ve received.
Or a public sign.
Tempted though I am to commit what I’d consider to be justifiable graffiti, I haven’t.
‘A’ when I should be reading ‘an’ is guaranteed to annoy me, too.
Recently, however, I discovered that my guarantee was, well, not guaranteed.
I received a card from my god-daughter.
(NB She spells ‘favourite’ the American way.)
Proudly, I noted she’d used ‘your’ correctly.
Many others have fallen at that hurdle.
But not her.
I also noted that she’d used ‘a’ incorrectly.
Guaranteed to annoy me, right?
As I looked at the card, I imagined her sitting at her little desk, creating something.
And the thought made me smile.
I felt such a rush of love for her.
It didn’t matter that it wasn’t perfect.
What mattered was that she’d made me a card.
And she’d invested some of herself in that card.
Ok, maybe it wasn’t perfectly perfect.
But some of her was in it.
So, actually, perfection wasn’t far off.
I realised that the card was all the better at that moment because it wasn’t perfectly perfect.
Oh, there’ll come a day when ‘a’ before ‘elephant’ will no doubt cause my god-daughter to roll her eyes in despair.
She certainly has potential to know it’s ‘an elephant.’
But only because she once didn’t know.
She’ll have learned from her mistakes.
But she’s not there yet.
And that’s ok with me.
As Christian authors, let’s remember why - and primarily for whom - we write.
A God who doesn’t expect perfect perfection all the time.
And a God who doesn’t require us to expect it of ourselves.
So, rather than be annoyed when the writing isn’t flowing, or when words that flowed yesterday seem rubbish in the light of today, let’s remember who is receiving what we offer.
A God who looks at our mixed up, topsy-turvy, illegible (definitely, in my case), confused, frustration-driven word offerings.
Not with disbelief.
But with love for us.
Maybe He sees the potential in our words.
Maybe He knows that, one day, we’ll reach it.
Maybe He knows we’re not there yet.
And maybe, just maybe, not being there yet is ok.
After all, He’s the one who knows the beginning from the end…
Philippians 1 v 6:
Being confident of this; that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
You cn find out more about Emily and her books on her website
Emily has written three books in her ‘30 Days with’ series, with more on the way. Each takes a character from the bible (Mary, Elijah and John so far) and writes a diary for them, leading to short devotional thoughts and reflections.
She has also published her memoir, ‘Still Emily’.
Emily regularly speaks on various topics, including disability, the bible and her personal story.
The many children in her life are a constant source of illustrative inspiration (and delight!).