Mistakes are Like Farts

Embarrassing, But a Fact of Life

Photo by Ivan Aleksic on Unsplash

It was a peaceful Sunday afternoon drive with the family, a perfect opportunity to review the sermon and see what the kids had learned that week. At one point, I became a little frustrated.

“Why does everyone at church act like they believe Christians don’t sin? We all make mistakes!”

And then my son, the ever-observant genius that he is, responded.

“Like farts.”

“What?” I didn’t make the connection.

“Mistakes, they’re like farts.”

I blinked, still confused.

“We all do it.”

And to prove his point, he farted.

Mistakes are like farts; embarrassing but a fact of life.

Although, now that I mention it, why are they embarrassing? Both mistakes (and farts) happen in public all the time. Why do we publicly shame people for the things that they do wrong? Why do kids laugh when a classmate farts?

If you ask my fourth-grade teacher, she has a well-rehearsed chalkboard lecture that she gave every time a child passed gas in her class. It didn’t take long for kids to start farting on purpose just to get out of lessons that they didn’t want. Most of Canal Fulton, Ohio knows that farts are perfectly normal bodily functions. But we still laugh.

In all honesty, most of us laugh at farts because it is fun to recognize our less than polite moments as accidental and inevitable.

It’s one thing to recognize that someone has made a really bad choice, and that there should be consequences for their actions. It’s another thing entirely to shun a person for what they did wrong. Accepting them after their wrong-doing does not mean accepting the action as right and good. It means recognizing that at some point, everyone does something wrong. It’s inevitable. Even Christians. Maybe, especially Christians.

Have you ever gotten angry? Have you ever sped on the highway? Have you ever eaten a few grapes before checking out at the grocery? Have you ever looked at a hot person who wasn’t your partner? Have you ever bought something you couldn’t afford? Have you ever told a white lie? Have you ever done something impulsively? Have you ever been attracted to someone who was already in a relationship? Have you ever read something or looked at something “scandalous”? Have you ever tried to deceive someone? tHave you ever eaten the rest of the bag of Oreos before your kids got home? Have you ever wanted your loved one to just shut up? Have you ever broken something? Have you ever hurt someone? Have you ever fallen? Have you ever watched a TV show instead of the dishes? Have you ever been too tired to scoop the dog’s poop? Have you ever done something wrong? Have you ever regretted something? Have you ever made a mistake?

Yes, yes you have. Because you are human. Wrong-doing is inevitable. No one is perfect.

So stop blaming and shaming yourself, and stop blaming and shaming others.

We all make mistakes, we all sin.

We all fart.

Just try to make it to the bathroom next time.

Accept forgiveness, give forgiveness, and stop stewing.

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Anne Springer

Anne Springer

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I’m a speculative fiction and poetry writer, a curious soul who never grows tired of asking “Why” and “What if?” Look up AuthorAnneSpringer on Facebook!