“Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.”-C.S. Lewis
Why do I believe in failure? Because without it, many amazing things would not have been birthed. Many times thinking about our past failures leads us to feel like we are failures and if we get stuck there that becomes our identity. Instead if we change our outlook and take the time to examine our past and/or our current failures, we would see that they have actually propelled us forward. Failure shows movement in our lives.
I can honestly tell you that without many failures in my life, I would have most likely not fully turned to God and surrendered my life. Let me share an example from my life.
I have had a lot of heartbreak in my 32 years on this earth (to say the least). The last major heartbreak was a failed relationship that opened a floodgate of pain that I had not dealt with in all my life. I could no longer put a band aid on an infected wound. I had to allow deep healing which involved a lot of pain and discomfort (which is why I had never dealt with any of it in the first place). Someone I loved so deeply and intensely, a person I knew deep down in my soul I would spend the rest of my life with, walked away without a real explanation and never looked back. It was a loss and rejection that cut so deep I could not move. The world all of a sudden had absolutely no color. Everything hurt, breathing hurt, music hurt, movies hurt and I started questioning every single person in my life. It all lead up to a moment in my living room where I dropped to my knees sobbing so hard that I could not catch my breath.
That night I laid there for several hours while my daughter was asleep in the other room and I had a conversation with God, well it was more like an ultimatum. I told God between my sobbing that I could no longer be hurt like this and the pain was too much that either he should take me out now or change my life completely so that I would not be in this position again. It was the most honest surrender I had ever had. See I was a believer most of my life, but not necessarily a practicing or abiding believer. I enjoyed the believing part but not so much the commitment part. I was more an emergency believer than an active believer. I believed in praying when I was in an emergent situation, but other than that I figured I had it handled. That night was the first step to a new path and new relationship with God and it all started with a failed relationship. Without that failure I do not believe I would be on the path or walk I am on now. I would be going around that same mountain again only to be lead to more heartbreak and more pain piled under that rug I swept it all under. I would not have dealt with any of the pain and I would have allowed the infection to spread further and consume me and those around me.
The positives of failure:
Without failure there would be no improvement.
Without failure we would not really need God.
“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9
Failure is necessary to learn and develop. Its progress and it shows we are trying.
Failure humbles you.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”-Ephesians 2:8-9
Your identity is in God, not in your failures.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”-2 Corinthians 5:17
“Remember that failure is an event, not a person.”- Zig Ziglar
I encourage you to take some time and sit down and write down your failures and next to them list what you learned from them. Or if you are currently in the midst of a failure, write down what you can learn from it. As in every week, I’m praying for each one of you. Every one of you is important to the kingdom, so put your crowns back on, throw your shoulders back and act accordingly to what God says about you!
“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed on an equal or greater benefit.”-Napoleon Hill