Everyone's Story welcomes this week author Beth K. Vogt. I first met Beth through her blog In Others' Words and I am grateful I did. If you ever need a pick-me-up to continue on your own unique path in life, Beth's gentle but strong words will do it. When discussing the details of her guest appearance I suggested that she may want to do what she does best: encourage others to be themselves, no matter if society or certain individuals claim they're flawed. Indeed, Beth came back with a lovely commentary that is shared below.
Beth is offering an excerpt of her debut novel WISH YOU WERE HERE for your reading pleasure... the same novel that is offered as a giveaway (see details below).
Beth is generously offering one copy of her debut novel WISH YOU WERE HERE to one randomly chosen commenter. The winner will be announced on Friday, October 26th between 4-5 PM EST. WISH YOU WERE HERE is a fresh take on the runaway bride theme when Allison, who is accustomed to the front seat of control, must rely on God to guide her way past her comfort zone. For your pleasure, here's an excerpt:
The Beauty of Imperfection by Beth K. Vogt
As a novelist, I don’t write about perfect people – and I don’t hang around perfect people, either.
Oh, don’t get me wrong. I tried to be a perfect person for far too long. I was all about crossing my t’s and dotting my i’s just so.
Silly, silly me.
|Daughter's Amy's wedding, photo by Lisa Anne|
So when I embarked on the adventure of motherhood, I wasn’t going to be just a good mom – I was going to be a perfect mom. It didn’t take too long for me to realize that I was missing the mark of “perfection” on a fairly regular basis – sometimes on a minute-by-wretchedly-imperfect minute.
I had a choice: I could admit I made mistakes. Or I could fake it.
I tried faking it. And I exhausted myself. I also frustrated both my children and myself. Finally, I admitted I was anything but perfect when it came to raising my children – or anything else, for that matter.
Here’s the funny thing: A few years ago, my oldest daughter asked me, “Do you want to know what the best thing is about you as a mom?”
Did I? I could almost hear the angels humming in the background. This was the long-awaited moment when one of my children rose up and blessed me. All moms wait for this, right?
Here’s what my daughter told me (and I quote): The best thing about you as a mom is that you weren’t perfect.
Of all the things I tried to do for my children – my daughter appreciated my failures?
|Husband Rob, Beth's|
She went on to explain that my imperfections were a blessing. By being less than perfect, I didn’t lull her into the false belief that her dad and I had a flawless marriage. I also didn’t set the performance bar so high for her that she thought she had to live a mistake-free life. And she also realized that being a woman of faith didn’t mean you never messed up.
Why Not Perfection
Shakespeare gave MacBeth the fatal flaw of “vaulting ambition” – the desire to be important, to be powerful.
My vaulting ambition was to be perfect. Now I’ll be the first person to admit I’m anything but perfect.
where all of Beth's
novels are set.
The characters in my novels? They’re not perfect, either. They make mistakes – and have to face the consequences of their actions. Why? Because that’s real life. Yes, I write fiction, but I like to wrestle with the realities of life within the pages of a made up story.
I know of only one person who ever lived a perfect life – and he ended up dying between two thieves after coming to serve and save the lost.
Was his life wasted then?
No – because Jesus was all about telling people they didn’t have to be perfect.
He was all about grace. Ah, grace. Doesn’t that word sound like an exhale of expectations?
Here’s the funny thing: Life, in all its less-than-perfect messiness, is beautiful.
In mistakes, you find forgiveness. In brokenness, you find mending.
If my life was perfect, where would my need be? For God? For others? For hope or love or comfort?
Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be satisfying …
A perfect life will never be satisfying.
Because a perfect life is an illusion. Real life, by definition, is flawed. You learn to embrace the heartache and the hope. You discover the patience to wait in the darkness for the first sliver of dawn … and God’s mercies that are new every morning. (Lamentations 3:23) And, yes, you realize that maybe, just maybe, the reality that you aren’t perfect is the best thing about you.
Viewers, let's chat: Have you been thrust into the false notion that you are a failure because you are not perfect? What have you done about it? Beth would enjoy hearing from you.
Beth K. Vogt believes God’s best often waits behind the doors marked “Never.” Wish You Were Here, her debut novel, released May 2012. Catch a Falling Star releases May 2013. Beth is an established magazine writer and former editor of Connections, MOPS International’s leadership magazine.
You can visit Beth at:
Website (and In Others' Word blog): bethvogt.com
Publisher: Howard Books
Author Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/AuthorBethKVogt
And watch for Beth's upcoming release: