By Alan Delery

I have a tendency to be an internal perfectionist, if there is such a thing, since I made that up in my head. I will assume you know what I mean. There is a trap of perfectionism that can keep a person from fully enjoying life and doing good in the world. 

I was recently reading the group norms from a training that I attended some time ago and one of the norms stood out to me that I think it was worth sharing. It’s important to me because we have a lot of work in dealing with the racial divide that is growing in our communities. To bridge today’s racial and cultural divides we must have difficult discussions with people that may not currently appreciate our perspective. Up until now, we may not appreciate their perspective.

While it is important to establish discussion guidelines to ensure safety and facilitate understanding, the one that I am reflecting on today is a great principle for life in general.

Without further ado I invite you to embrace this norm as today’s growth advice:

“Take risks, be raggedy, make mistakes – then let go and move on.”

If we wait until we are perfect we will never take the great undertaking of racial reconciliation and healing. We will never venture out of our comfort zone and experience our potential of being peacemakers. We will never help others around us to reach their potential. 

I know raggedy may be a tough one for you but I took it to mean don’t be overly worried about how you look to others. We have been called for more than just waiting for “perfection.”

Be a part of building, strengthening and repairing your community. As Christians, we can rely on God’s grace to walk on the path of peace that Jesus taught. We can love those around us even though they may not believe as we do.

In closing I repeat today’s growth advice because someone really needs to hear this in order to break what may be a paralyzing perfectionism.  

Take risks, be raggedy, make mistakes – then let go and move on.


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