I don’t think there is one person alive that claim complete success at all they’ve done. But we sure have tried. Failure is absolutely part of life. We are human and we are going to fail in some capacity or another. Failure teaches us valuable lessons…lessons that we hope not to repeat in the future…if we can avoid it. “Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me.”
However, what happens when you keep failing at the same thing over and over again? Convention would tell us that we didn’t try hard enough the first time. Maybe we didn’t commit to “begin with the end in mind.” (Thank you Stephen Covey). Further still, we could conclude that we must not have learned our mistake the first go-around and now karma has stepped in and slapped our hands, so as to speak. Maybe we didn’t pray hard enough. Not.
What happens when each time we try again, voices in our heads keep reminding us how badly we have failed in the past and that the cause is hopeless …and, well, why even try now?
I don’t think any of us set out to fail at what we do. However, at some point, somewhere down the line, we will fail…at something, anything. We will fail in relationships, responsibilities, school, work, the list is endless. Failure is generally never the option we choose, but by our own shortcomings, it is the option we sometimes must face. Failure brings us to humility; reminding us that maybe we aren’t all that we are cracked up to be. Failure shows our cracks…but where failure looms large, grace plugs in the gaps. (“My grace is enough; it’s all you need. My strength comes into it’s own in your weakness.” 2 Cor 12:9 MSG)
Sometimes I wonder if the real demon in failure is when I believe that I am a sum of my failures. That my failures are a reflection of how weak or stupid I am. Those are times where I am compelled to give up.
At the end of the day, when it is all said and done, Christ didn’t die on the cross for the saints…He died for the broken ones. Perfect people don’t need a Savior, broken people do. Our failures point to His glory.
(This post is dedicated to my warrior of a husband…NOT because he has so many failures :)…but, because of the example he sets for our family of continuing to fight to hear the voice of truth, believing that grace, not failure, defines who he is.)