The Mysterious Difference Between Good and Perfect

September 29, 2016

After my walk/run this morning, I dripped with sweat. Seriously saturated. Wet clothes. Wet hair. Sweat lines poured from every pore.

It’s not a good look for me, but it’s so so good anyway. When I look in the mirror and see that mess, I feel awesome, like I’ve done something, like I could do anything. And though I wouldn’t want people to see me like this, I’m overjoyed to see me like this.

I’ve never been much of an athlete. I have no idea what a runner’s high feels like. Never been inclined toward the physical. But, here I am - about to finish out an entire month of every day exercise.

And I love the sweat. I come home and I don’t rush to the shower. I bask in it. Let it pour. And I think, this is so so good.

Not perfect.

But good.

Watching me run - poor people - is probably like witnessing some weird interpretive dance, but lacking in all grace or sense. I can’t even run the whole time, yet. And of course, the aftermath - sweat pouring - isn’t pretty. Just like convincing myself to do it, to get out there, well, that’s not pretty either. Sometimes the mental battle to do it is more strenuous than the thing itself.

So, it’s not perfect. Just good. And I’d rather have good. Good is accessible. Perfect isn’t.

Another good thing that’s happened since we’ve settled in to our new home - I’m much freer in my head now.

It’s amazing how much of my mental life was eaten up - that I let myself eat up - when I worked a regular job and did writing on the side. Most of my mental energies burned up over issues - how to handle something, deal with people, what ifs, general worries, snakes in the birdhouses. I was so consumed with all this that most things (exercising often being one of them), got swept aside. I didn’t have the energy for it. My ongoing quest for perfection meant I was always moving, and usually, getting nowhere.

With less of my mind spinning, it’s been easier to be still. To write. To think. To run.

Course, this isn’t perfect. Not at all. It’s lonely and humbling and progress is slow and there are great beasts of insecurity and fear and doubts (most people don’t make it) battling me every day. It’ll never be perfect.

But, still. It’s good. So good.

God looked over everything he had made;

it was so good, so very good!

Genesis 1:31The Message (MSG)