Progress doesn’t always come in neat, straight lines. It can be messy and look like a mistake when you come across it, but it doesn’t have to be criticized just because it hasn’t yet come together in a way that makes sense on the surface.
This is one of the threads that runs through the book Walking Through Illusion by Betsy Otter Thompson. This book imagines Jesus almost in the role of a self-improvement coach telling the life stories of the people around him. In every story, there is always something out of place or happening out of sequence. It seems easy to point to where the problem is — indeed, they are all familiar, everyday problems on the surface — but in each case, Walking Through Illusion suggests a gentler, less stressful way of looking at it.