I’ve never met a person who enjoys failing & most of us avoid stuff that has a high risk for failing. But there are LOADS of people in the Bible who failed, took risks and some had tremendous successes – usually after they had overcome some significant failure hurdles. Some examples would include:
Jacob’s son, Joseph: failed with his brothers, but became 2nd in command to Pharoah in Egypt & rescued his family from famine
Jacob: tricked his brother & father, but went on to become “Israel” and the founder of the Twelve Tribes
Saul / Paul: gave hearty approval at Stephen’s martyrdom & became the largest contributing author to the New Testament in addition to founding the majority of early churches on two continents
When you fail, keep in mind some helpful perspectives:
failing is a verb, but failure is a noun: one can change but the other is more permanent
the greatest lessons often come from failing more than succeeding
failing can the essential fertilizer for redemption
no failure is beyond God’s power & love to transform into beauty, resurrection, abundance and divine success!
I’ve been doing some new projects: trying my hand at making bread & working on getting my YouTube channel up & running! With my attempts, I’ve had lots of bumps along the road. For example, I forgot to turn on the mic & focus the lens for the video stuff & my bread stuff last week wasn’t tasty. But I keep trying & more importantly, I keep improving!
The principle of gradual improvement is a good thing to embrace because it helps us avoid the failure trap. This trap says that the failing as an action becomes failure, the noun. Just because you fail doesn’t make you a failure. Let’s be aware that failing is an integral part of the process for succeeding, when we stay in a state of continual learning. Succeeding is the consequence of learning from both failures & mistakes. So let’s celebrate the bumps along the road because they inch us closer & closer to success!!
I was in 5th grade when I first tried to play basketball & I was 100% horrible. Neither of my parents are particularly athletic nor did they have alot of athletic background or experience. Furthermore, we didn’t have lots of sports stuff when I was growing up so my recess basketball games at school were the extent of getting some initial experience. For whatever reason, I wanted to be good at basketball so I decided to keep trying even though I was awful. I didn’t have much success at the beginning of my efforts, but I kept trying. I had horrible shooting form because I wasn’t strong enough to get the ball to the hoop. I couldn’t dribble to save my life & I was more uncoordinated than any 5th grade girl in my class, but I kept trying. When I entered 6th grade, I joined a school that had a girls basketball team & I shockingly made the Varisty squad, but was soon demoted to JV, but I kept trying. Throughout my middle school years, I continued to play basketball & because I kept trying, I began to improve. When I was in 8th grade, we had a freethrow competition to see who could make the most free throws out of 50 attempts. I tried really hard & came in 2nd on my team. I went on to play basketball in high school and kept trying to get better. I continued to improve and was privileged to be on a team that went on to win the state championship 🙂
Moral of the story: long-term success requires that we keep trying
I read this morning about how king David in the Bible took a census at the end of his reign that was displeasing to God. The result of God’s displeasure with David was the death of 70,000 people. There was about to be more deaths but God stopped the carnage at the threshing floor of Araunah. David bought this threshing floor & it later became the place where the first permanent temple in Israel was built.
Our places of disastrous failure can be used by God for Their (Trinity) greatest dwelling place. In my mind, the key to redeeming the failures & shortcomings in our lives is through repenting & acknowledging our need for a greater inclusion of God’s presence into our lives. We need God in our decisions, daily living & throughout all of our lives 🙂