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The Museum of Mistakes

By Don Loftis | 05.18.16

Most of the time we seek to hide our mistakes.  We want to erase the low grade on the report card or throw the broken lamp into the dumpster before anyone gets home.  Even in our spiritual  lives, most of us have a hard time confessing our faults to one another.  It is easy to hide behind the old adage, “Don’t air your dirty laundry.”


With that common feeling in mind, the Burnt Food Museum in Massachusetts seems quite odd.  Deborah Henson-Conant created this museum over 25 years ago to commemorate having burned some apple cider to cinders.  Since then she has added baked potatoes, quiche, pizza, toast, waffles, and many other items.  She offers narrated tours and has a mail order business that highlights these lowlights of her culinary exploits.


I certainly could open my own auxiliary wing.  I have a great story about burned white beans and have produced numerous overly well done burgers.  On the spiritual side, there are plenty of sins that have needed to be confessed to people and to the Lord.


Our personal “museum of mistakes” does offer some values.  These reminders should spur us to try to do better–not repeating the same sins.  They should foster a sense of compassion, empathy, and patience toward others who fall short of perfect living.  Most of all, our imperfect lives should help us see the need for divine forgiveness.  We are not good enough to go to heaven on our merit or rich enough to buy a ticket.  Mistakes highlight forgiveness, and the search for forgiveness drives us to the foot of the cross of Jesus.



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