Good Enough

I’ve been thinking a lot about our seniors in high school this week. Many of them made decisions about what college they are going to attend. I remember that year as being so full of ups and downs–anxiety about the future, leaving home, getting a job. Maybe it is because I’m a first-born with a lot of perfectionistic tendencies, but I would agonize over each decision, and I often still do. But I am working on that. And if I could go back and talk to my 18-year-old self, I would tell her to relax because there simply is no such thing as a perfect decision, there are only good enough ones.
I would also tell her that she would be well-served to figure that out sooner rather than later, because once you have to make decisions on behalf of your kids, it can get even more excruciating.
Good enough. In my head I get that. People are sinners, and so are institutions. So thinking that there is a perfect college out there, or school for your kids, or mate for you is silly. When sinners hang out with each other, it is hard and messy. That is the way it is in community.
But we get a lot of messages in our culture that there IS the perfect place to live or person to marry. Soul mates, your destiny, stuff like that. But the older I get, the more I realize that no matter where you go to school, no matter who you marry, no matter where you live, there will be hard things about it and there will be wonderful things about it. That is life–ups and down, blessings and brokenness.
And really, I would not have it any other way. When our kids were moved to new schools this year, it was so hard to decide whether to keep them in the familiar old school or go ahead and be moved to the school that is our new neighborhood school. I had wise friends remind me again and again that no matter what school they go to, it will be good enough. There will be some things you like and some things you don’t. So make a decision and then let it go.
God gave us brains, and we need to think a lot about our decisions, but faith is also involved. We were never promised an easy life, in fact, Jesus actually said when you follow him, life will be harder—remember that take up your cross stuff? But faith also trusts that as Paul writes in Romans, all things work together for good [enough] for those that love the Lord [that enough was added by me]. Because Paul too acknowledges that life is hard. But when you have a community and faith, you can get through and life can even be wonderful.
Congratulations on making your decision. It will be amazing, and it will also not be amazing. But God will be with you. God will put wonderful people in your life, in the form of messy communities. But it will be good enough. And when you know and love God, good enough is just great.
Blessings on your journey. Pastor Paula

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