October 30, 2014
Psalm 73:25-26 (NLT)
Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; He is mine forever.
Oops I did it again! Sound familiar. Despite my best intentions as a parent, I have epically failed yet again. I knew when I planned the event with the administrator of the school that it would fall right before Halloween and the Fall Festival at our church. But I knew that I would just press through it (in my own strength) and it would be alright. Two major campus events in one day, knock it all out at once with my helpers it shouldn’t be a problem. Well, it was. I came home from the Career Day Expo exhausted beyond anything I could imagine. My aching feet arguing with every other aching bone in my body, my mind completely shutdown to avoid the dispute. Surely on Wednesday, I would feel better. I collapsed into bed sleeping soundly all night only to awake to the same tired muscles now still from sudden immobility after hours of abuse. Not to mention a mind that couldn’t think straight. By the end of the day, I knew I would miss the Fall Festival and a night with my precious children. There was nothing left to give and I was completely tanked out. So they loaded up in the “family” suburban and headed off to a night of fun, candy and fireworks without me. Well, I was not completely alone my husband stayed with me and our sweet little dog followed my wandering mess around the house. Not to mention, the enemy who sat dutifully on my shoulder telling me what a terrible mother I was and rotten parent who cared more about her job than her babies. He carried a large bat as if was needed against my worn-out mind and body delivering deliberate and well-placed blows directly to my heart and soul. Lord, I have failed them again. How do I escape failure in this lifetime? When will I finally get it right? I don’t love my job! I love them and that’s why I go to work each day. Help me to find balance. Lord, point me to the lesson to be learned here so that I can move on.
Proverbs 24:10 (NLT) If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.
Wow, thanks for the encouragement (written with an ounce or two of sarcasm). The Lord is not beating me up. I am allowing the enemy to do so and completely enabling him to make his target. The Lord is not critical in this statement but rather matter of fact. Look if you keep failing, your strength is too small. He is giving us the answer to our problem. We just have to look past our failure to find the Truth. God’s Word sets us up to fail in order to find His Strength and Power in our life. If I did not have something to compare my life to then how would I know my need for a Savior? I wouldn’t. Failure is not optional it is inevitable. It does not have to be fatal but will become fertile when we plant seeds of God’s Righteousness into the mix. Faith is found in our failure otherwise people would depend solely on themselves. Hope is discovered in our disappointment and need to succeed. Our human strength will always be too small. That’s the point of our failure to point us to the kind of power that never fails under pressure.
Habakkuk 3:16-19 (NLT)
Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines;
even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation! The Sovereign Lord is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights.
Everyone has failed. That’s right even those who you think are perfect have experienced failures and setbacks along the way. They just refused to give up. How do I know that they have failed? “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” (Romans 3:23) Everyone is born destined to die as a direct result of our sinful nature. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Our immediate failure demonstrates our need to discover God’s Grace. God gave us His Word as a mirror and sword. It reflects our need for the Lord and cuts us like a two-edged sword so His Love, Mercy and Grace can penetrate our hard heart and made up mind. We fail because our strength is too small. We begin to succeed when the Lord becomes our Strength. When we love and trust the Lord, it is then that He becomes the One who we depend on making Him the power that controls our life. Our failure is not for our demise or to our detriment. It benefits our life by evaluating our faith and trust to determine any weakness. This is vital to our salvation. It also prospers our soul as we discover not only God’s Grace but His Faithfulness. When we decide that God is our Strength and the Lord is our Salvation by committing our heart and life to Him, it is in that moment that failure is no longer a setback but becomes a catapult in our life.
Luke 1:37 (NLT) For the Word of God will never fail you.
When I have failed the Lord, my family, others or myself, I have learned to run to the Word of God for help. God wants my life to be better than anything that I could possibly imagine even more than I could think to ask for. (Ephesians 3:20) He is working out every detail for my good. (Romans 8:28) He is perfecting that which concerns me. (Psalm 138:8) His Word cuts my heart like a two-edged sword to reveal the credibility of my faith and what I believe. (Hebrews 4:12) My failure did not surprise God. Jesus already prescribed the Grace that I need to get back up again and step right back into right-standing with God. The Word of God will not return to Him void. (Isaiah 55:11) He cannot and will not revoke His Blessing from my life. (Isaiah 54:10) As I take the Word of God filling the void left by my personal failure, it is then that I discover that He is all I really needed. God wrote every single moment of my life before I was ever born. (Psalm 139:16) Does this mean that He knew I would fail? Of course, He did. His Grace is sufficient because not only did the Lord know that we would fail but how many times, too. He knew how far we would fall and how long it would take us to get back up. He knew what it would take to make us call on His Name and receive His Spirit. Friend, you may have fallen but the Word of God says, “It’s time to get up!”
Hebrews 12:14-16 (NLT)
Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord. Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many. Make sure that no one is immoral or godless like Esau, who traded his birthright as the firstborn son for a single meal.
To think that we will never fail is delusional and unrealistic, but I know that there are people who do not want anyone to know their fears and weaknesses. Everyone fails in life. The key is not to “sell your birthright” because you do not have to. I was raised in a church that told me that God had a plan for my life that was perfect. He does. But it was implied that if I “missed” His “Perfect” plan that I would have to somehow settle for the rest of my life. Where’s God’s Grace is this statement? Without God’s Grace, what’s the point? I cannot overcome my greatest failure of all without His Grace. We need the Grace of God. We fail so we can discover the true potential of God’s Love for us which is His Grace and Mercy. Just because you failed doesn’t mean you missed His Plan, but when you discover His Love in the midst of your setback than everything is going according to His Plan. The only way that we trade or sell our birthright is when we give up on God’s Grace, Mercy and Love. The Truth is many will fail to receive God’s Grace today simply because they do not want to surrender to their weakness trying to use their own strength. (Luke 13:23-25) Who told you to be the strong one? Who said that you have to be perfect? What makes you think that you are above failure? The enemy may have told you that but the Truth does away with a lie when you believe it. God’s Plan for your life takes in to consideration all of our fault’s and failures as He makes them work out for our good!
2 Corinthians 13:4-5 (NLT)
Although he was crucified in weakness, he now lives by the power of God. We, too, are weak, just as Christ was, but when we deal with you we will be alive with him and will have God’s power. Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith.
As a believer, there is only one way that we can have an epic failure. If we fail the test of genuine faith, we will be missed forever. Maybe if it were about me, my failure would matter to the Lord. But since it is all about God’s Power and the Grace of God given to me through His Son, Jesus Christ, I have discovered it is not all about me but all about Him. In fact, less of me makes room for more of Him. He must increase, but I must decrease according to John 3:30. Suddenly, my personal failure gives way to God’s Grace and now I see the things that He wants to do in my life. I have been praying about spending more time with my family. I have asked the Lord to open the door to my return home to be with my girls who are still here. Could it be that my inability to make it to the Festival with them was just another way for Him to increase my desire to obtain that goal and lead me to His Blessing that is waiting there? Of course, it is. God uses every detail of our life to reveal Himself especially our failures when we become vulnerable and willing to accept His Grace, Mercy and Love as a means of fulfillment when we have radically failed. God wants me to be found faith-full in the end. He doesn’t want to lose me. He will stop at nothing to reveal Himself to me even allowing me to fall down, skin my knees or hurt my feelings when necessary. Nothing is wasted. It will all be used to release His Glory in my life. God wants the standard of my life to match the Glorious Standard that people abandoned. Christ knows human weakness but He is filled with the Power of God. We are filled with His Spirit so we also can experience His Power in our everyday life. You are not a failure. Even if it was your fault, it is not fatal. You are not called to be perfect. You are to have faith. That’s it. In a nutshell, God wants you to be faithful. You are allowed to fail. That’s what His Grace is for. You can experience setbacks. Don’t worry new mercy will be provided each morning. Let yourself off the hook. Focus on your faith today, because He is faithful. He will forgive you when you mess up. I know this is true because I have thoroughly tested Him. Examine your heart today. Do not judge yourself by your failure but the contents of your heart. God loves you. No failure is epic except the absence of faith. You are forgiven and free to experience the Grace of God. It is more than enough! Every failure in our life is an opportunity to know Him more.
I John 1:6-9 (NLT)
If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.