Saturday, September 25, 2010

Good Enough

Andy Borowitz wrote in a recent The New Yorker a humor piece entitled, "The Good Enough Baby." His humor bordered on satire and, at the same time, contain wisdom. He wrote in support of raising "good enough" babies instead of "perfect ones." We all know that the perfect child (didn't we all strive for this on the first one?) is an impossible goal.  Everyone wins if we lighten up and enjoy our kids (and they, their parents) without the pressure of the impossible "perfect."

What if we all lived "good enough "lives?  Perfect, if we mean  following the plan, without mistake or blemish, is a crushing fantasy we keep. Even Jesus, when he tells us to be "perfect," means for us to be perfectly who God intends us to be - whole and loving.

I say we all strive for "good enough" and enjoy the life God gave us as well as take the pressure off parent as well as child. Good enough is not bad and very serviceable. One can follow Jesus by being forgiven but cannot follow by being perfect. Perfect people, you see, have no need of a savior.

Bear in mind that good enough does not mean "let the other guy do it" or "slack off and do nothing" or "lowest common denominator." Its good. God likes good. We all benefit from good.

I think we would do quite well with good enough parents, children, marriages, churches, jobs, sports, lawmakers, schools, volunteers, and bosses; and gave up pretending that we were actually going to pull of perfect and ruining "perfectly" good lives in the process. Think of all the free time we would generate. All the reduced stress. The money channeled elsewhere than debt (which we use to "create" perfect.) We would begin to appreciate each other and stop wearing out those who are willing to lead. Expectations might become holy instead of grandiose.

Good enough today.

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