News and any Live television is an over-the-top tense, crazy and insane business in Hollywood. The time pressure to do everything right this very moment or you blow it is unbelievable. James Brooks 1987 movie “BROADCAST NEWS” did an excellent job of reflecting that intensity. I freelanced live award shows for 16 years at such shows as the Grammy Awards to Golden Globes Awards and the intensity was always the same. Mistakes weren’t forgiven. One such time I will always remember was seeing one of my friends go in to make last minute script changes for Dick Clark. All changes are always done in DIFFERENT colored paper and inserted to all the key players' scripts (including the director, producer, stage manager and camera man). My friend copied her draft in the WRONG color and turned everyone into a panic. It was still 6 hours before show time, but it didn’t matter. I watched helplessly while they searched to find out who did the copying and had her escorted from the premises. She would not be permitted to even watch the show. Harsh punishment in my opinion. I was very disappointed at the meanness of it all. Sure they had the right to remove her from copying. But to treat her like someone who was caught stealing was ridiculous.
I made a mistake today. And because of that tiny error of not following one of the MANY instructions, the whole effort was for nothing. My mistake was on a fun job as a mystery shopper for a fast food restaurant I frequent. I decided to sign up for mystery shopping because it sounded like a no-brainer hobby to get paid to do something you do anyway. And one thing I do is eat out and dine in often whenever I write or edit. I did virtually everything on the 3 pages of single spaced small print. What I did wrong was not do something that was on the 10 pages of small print when I originally signed up for the company and that was to sit down for 15 minutes after my order was delivered to continue observation. Because of that I don’t get paid or reimbursed. Of course it’s not the end of the world, but it was very frustrating and unfair in my opinion.
The punishment wasn’t as harsh as the producers of the MTV Awards were to my friend. And I wasn’t humiliated in front of my favorite celebrities. But it still brought back all those memories of how harsh, unjust and unfair life can be in a world of an all-or-nothing mentality…. But isn’t that how life is? Think about it. You can put your whole heart and soul into believing in something or someone, but if you’ve chosen the wrong one to believe in, you’ve lost everything for eternity. You either get it right, and believe in the one true God or believe in a lie and lose your soul for eternity, no matter how sincere your mistake was. On my mystery shop I had every opportunity to get my instructions down correctly and I blew it. My friend’s accident of not copying the papers in the right color could have caused some major embarrassment to Dick Clark on live television. So many life-ending tragedies have happened when someone was putting in a well intentioned effort and just blew it for an instant. And good intentions have paved the way to hell for generations. Yes, life is hard, but Jesus came to give us peace and most important to give us a gift we don’t have to earn.
We can’t be perfect….believe me I’ve tried. the good news is we don’t have to be. Human beings have tried to be perfect or good enough to reach God since man began, but we can’t earn salvation. It is not something to be earned. It is a gift. Today reminded me of how wonderful a gift it is. Romans 10:9 tells us if we believe in our heart that Jesus is Lord and confess with our mouth that Christ was raised from the dead, we will be saved. I have received salvation already and I won’t be kicked out and not get to enjoy heaven, even if copied the wrong pages or forgot to wait an extra 15 minutes. I will be embraced and accepted and loved just as I am. And not only do I gain eternity with this gift, I get Jesus guiding me throughout my life, throughout my mistakes, disappointments and heartbreaks and I have found meaning in the midst of it all. Thank you Jesus for your ultimate gift of giving up your life for mine and for accepting me, mistakes, flaws, imperfections and all.