Tag Archives: being human

I’m only human

I’m only human. What are my other choices?

  • Animal
  • Vegetable
  • Mineral
  • Robot

Some might suggest we represent all four plus more.

Normally when we hear someone say that line it is accompanied with some clarifying excuse:

“I know I made a mistake, but I’m only human.”

Is being “only human” a bad thing? Are we subject to fear, failure, disappointment, betrayal? Of course we are. Flaws are evident, even in the most respectable persons of high integrity. Scripture makes it plain: “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard,” Paul wrote to the Romans.

We get it. We’re not perfect. We stumble, we fall; sometimes we wallow in our misdeeds and mistakes.

God didn’t create automatons. His amazing gift of life carried with it an enormous risk. He gave humans alone the privilege and responsibility to live with free will. There was always the possibility … okay, the probability … okay, the certainty that we would make bad choices, try to live life on our terms instead of God’s.

But being “only human” isn’t a curse; it’s an opportunity. One of my favorite authors is Brené Brown. Think about her words: “To become fully human means learning to turn my gratitude for being alive into some concrete common good. It means growing gentler toward human weakness. It means practicing forgiveness of my and everyone else’s hourly failures to live up to divine standards. It means learning to forget myself on a regular basis in order to attend to the other selves in my vicinity. It means living so that “I’m only human” does not become an excuse for anything. It means receiving the human condition as blessing and not curse, in all its achingly frail and redemptive reality.”

Today could be your celebration of “I’m only human” day!