Being Perfect (v2)
(No I’m not going to get all Billy Bob Thornton “Friday Night Lights” on you….although I do like that speech)
This post has been rattling around in my brain for a while, and has undergone several edits to make it postable….
A while ago I was running a prayer evening which was focussed on children and young people. We asked the youth what they were worried about, and I got a whole list of things – which will probably spark off a whole host of posts – one of those was “living up to the expectations of others”.
Young people these days have so much pressure on their lives….11+, exams, surviving school, sixth form & uni as a Christian, parental pressure, peer pressure, church pressure…to name but a few.
We need to remember that they’re teenagers, and life as a Christian teenager has never been harder. Not only is there every temptation out there known to man, but, if they do slip up, before they know it it’s all over Facebook and every Tom, Dick & Harry has read it, filed it and memorised it.
All of this reminds me of an Alanis Morissette song (yes, I know you probably don’t know her – she was around in the nineties) called Perfect, which I really connected with when I was younger (and still do at times). Check it out below.
(tried to find a better version but couldn’t….)
Does that ring any bells?
These guys don’t need more pressure from us. They need a break. They need to know that it’s ok to fail. It’s ok if they slip up. It’s ok if they miss the mark. As their youth worker I’m supposed to be like Jesus to them. What would Jesus do to me when I fall? He’d be one step behind me, picking me up, dusting me off and setting me on my way with a smile. He wouldn’t judge. He wouldn’t sigh. He wouldn’t say “try harder, be perfect”. He’d say “it’s ok, I love you, keep going, I’ll be with you”. That’s who I need to be. That’s who we need to be.
We can’t be perfect. We can’t expect our young people to be perfect. We should just be fellow travellers with them on this journey, sharing experiences, helping each other and showing each other how best to live as God wants us to.
P.S. – If you haven’t seen it, watch Friday Night Lights!