Episode #8: Needs and Mistakes – Unconventional Gratitude
From Today’s Episode:
Welcome! We’re in our Unconventional Gratitude Series and today’s topic is Needs and Mistakes.
God, this struggle I'm in right now, what's one way you want to use it for good?
Here’s the episode transcript
Hey friends! It’s great to have you here! I love getting to encourage your conversational relationships with God through these short minutes we have together.
As you may already know about me, I’m a can-do achiever type person. Type A, strong work ethic, and resourceful. God made me this way, and I’m grateful. One trap I can fall into however, is that I can have a hard time when I make a mistake, or I’m confronted with my own limitations, and sometimes I struggle asking for help. That’s why our unconventional gratitude for today is being grateful for our needs and mistakes.
Grace is giving us the good that we didn’t earn and don’t deserve.
Mercy is not giving us the bad that we did earn and do rightly deserve.
Okay, I know this thing I’m about to tell you isn’t the right perspective. But I struggle with it, so I’m going to tell you and part of why I’m telling you is practicing the change I want to have in my mind and heart. Are you ready? I don’t want to need grace or mercy. I want to have everything under control, have plenty of energy to do everything, and do everything right. Ridiculous right? But please let me know if you can relate to any of my struggle!
God freely gives us both grace and mercy. And sometimes he gives me even more grace and more mercy because I’m struggling to receive the grace and the mercy he offered me for the first thing. I’m grateful, and I’m learning to receive with gratitude, because God doesn’t reluctantly give us those gifts, he delights in doing so.
So let’s look at some of those gaps, needs, and mistakes that we may have in our lives to be thankful for because they help us see God’s faithfulness and receive care from him. I’ll start with small easy ones: Have you ever dropped your phone and the screen didn’t shatter? Ran late for a meeting (or missed it altogether) and been reminded of your human limitations? Have you snapped at a loved one and got to model asking for forgiveness? Used all your energy for the day and relied on God and others to make it through? Made a mistake and got to admit it and stay humble?
What about some of the bigger ones? Are there circumstances in your life that you know you can’t handle on your own? The needs you bring to God when you don't know what to do or you don’t have the resources to get it done or something is entirely out of your control. Those needs can cultivate our reliance on God and our awareness of him. We get to see his faithfulness in practical, tangible ways.
Personally, I’m in the midst of a long process of fixing some TMJ issues with my jaw. I’ve been plagued with migraines since I was a teen and getting rid of them means fixing the root issue. It also means that in a season where I talk all the time, and work and ministry often has me speaking in meetings, on podcasts, or from platforms, I’m also constantly having new metal fixtures added to my mouth. God’s been teaching me a lot through this process, and one of those big lessons (and WINS) is that he’s growing me in reliance on him. Which means the needs, or shortcomings, and yes, even insecurities I face, I now get to be grateful for.
Here’s a passage we can reflect on today:
Lamentation 3:19-25 in the ESV says,
19 Remember my affliction and my wanderings,
the wormwood and the gall!
20 My soul continually remembers it
and is bowed down within me.
21 But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
Great is your faithfulness.
24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”
25 The Lord is GOOD to those who wait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
Our needs and mistakes can prompt gratitude, not just for the future end we hope for in what God will do, but also how he already uses those areas of lack for our good. As you talk with God about it, here’s a question you can ask him. God, this struggle I’m in right now, what's one way you want to use it for good?
Have a good talk!
And if you’ve been encouraged by this content, please share it with a friend and help them grow in their conversational relationship with God too!
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