I recently heard Dan Hazeltine, the lead singer for Jars of Clay, quote Walker Percy, who said, “Bad books always lie. They lie most of all about the human condition.” This literary critique coincides with a bit of advice a mentor of mine, Dr. Jim Gardner, once gave me over lunch at the university I attended. He said it’s better to read a well-written, non-religious work of literature that provides insight into the human condition than it is to read a shallow, half-baked religious book filled with spiritual superficialities.
Both Percy’s critique and Gardner’s advice speak to both the importance of embracing the truth of the human condition and the danger of avoiding our humanity. Both statements also beg the question: So what, exactly, are the realities of our collective human experience that we’d do well to embrace? Here’s a modest start to answering that question:
So as we navigate the week, let’s not expect everything to go according to plan, and let’s not be surprised when life’s twists and turns affect us. Instead, let’s remind ourselves that we're not bigger than life, and then let’s give ourselves a break. Cut ourselvs some slack. Offer ourselves grace. Care for our hearts. Repeat after me: “I don’t have to be superhuman (your turn) . . . and pretending I am will always diminish and never enhance my true humanity (your turn again).
Here’s to a humble, healthy, happy week,