It came at a time that I needed it most. I was knee deep in comparisons; trying to keep up with the Joneses (and failing miserably) and that’s when I read it. A friend of mine wrote a blog post about her “ministry of mediocrity.” This was years ago and she doesn’t blog anymore but recently I contacted her to ask if I could write about it here. I still think about that post often and I’m so thankful she said yes. It has to do with the “purpose” side of home-keeping, hospitality. And it has nothing to do with a perfectly made bed, fluffed pillows, or a well curated gallery wall.
It has to do with being mediocre.
So what is this ministry of mediocrity, exactly? Well, it could mean inviting friends over to hang out with a sink/counter/table full of dishes and not apologizing for them. It could also mean not shaving your legs or repainting your chipped toe nail polish and still wearing shorts and sandals because its hot outside. Its remembering that we’re all human, nobody’s perfect, and revealing your own imperfections creates a space for true connection. Sound scary? Maybe it is, a little. But its also brave and leads to intimacy and realness- creating a sense of belonging that we all crave.
When we furiously scrub our houses, selves, and lives to gleaming perfection before interacting with anyone, we give this impression that this is how life really is. We appear untouchable and unreachable. Our homes may be even a little uncomfortable.
But what if instead of perfection we purposefully aimed for mediocrity with the intent of ministering to others? What if we aimed for just “good enough” housekeeping? Just “good enough” cooking, party-throwing, hair-fixing, decorating? Whatever it is that eats you up because you’re just not perfect or its just not your thing- let it go. Enough of this super-woman “I-can-do-it-all” lie. When we reveal our imperfections to one another, we actually minister to eachother, saying “you are free to be exactly who you are.”
When someone invites me in from the perspective of a ministry of mediocrity, I feel at ease, I feel comfortable. I know they are more interested in connection and friendship rather than creating a mirage of perfection. I am allowed to be myself and reveal my own imperfections: messy house, unshaven legs, at times ill-behaved children, and all. They have ministered to my soul by just being themselves: which is at times genuinely, perfectly mediocre.