This Thursday night is our Men’s Fellowship Night with Colony grad, Pastor Stephen Keith sharing God’s Word. Check out the link for details. Come bring a friend and enjoy a great night of great food, fellowship, worship, Bible teaching and fun.
Dealing with Failure
The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, And He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand. Psalm 37:23-24
We as men typically don’t deal well with failure, do we?
There are all types of failure:
Job related failure.
I didn’t score well with my golf game.
Failure in our spiritual lives.
If we deal with at all, we deal with it in many different ways if we are honest with ourselves and each other.
Some of us withdraw.
We get angry.
We run from it.
We certainly don’t want to talk about it – after all, we can’t look bad in front of our spouses, kids, co-workers, and especially not to anyone at church.
But the reality is that we all fail. We all make mistakes. We have seasons in our lives when we are doing everything right. And there are the seasons when we just plain blow it.
How do we deal with failure?
Here’s how Dr. Paul David Tripp addresses failure in our spiritual journey in his book New Morning Mercies:
It’s what we all are. We’re all failures. Own it; it will be good for you. There is not a day in any of our lives when we don’t lay down empirical evidence that we are failures. Maybe it’s in an unkind word, an ugly thought, or an ungodly desire. Maybe it’s in a moment of selfish envy or unbridled greed. Maybe it’s in a moment of pride, when we have to be the center of attention or steal some of God’s glory. Perhaps it’s in acts of gluttony or in the desires of lust. Maybe it’s in an instance when our hearts are cold and lack sympathy for the poor or the suffering. Maybe it shows itself when we are jealous of the beauty or power of another. Perhaps it’s revealed when we surrender our hearts once again to some earthbound idol. Perhaps it shows itself when we take what is not ours to take or fail to give what we have been called to give. Somehow , some way, we all do it every day— we fall short of God’s righteous standard. We all fail to be what he has created and called us to be.
Now, when confronted with your failure— and you will be if you’re at all humble and honest—you have only three choices. You can commit to be an evidence denier, working to convince yourself that you’re okay when you’re really not okay. You can comfort yourself with plausible arguments for your righteousness, giving ease to your conscience. Or, in the face of your failure, you can wallow in guilt and shame, beating yourself up because you did not do better and working hard to hide your failure from God and others. Or, in the brokenness and grief of conviction, you can run not away from God but to him. You can run into the light of his holy presence utterly unafraid, filled with the confidence that although he is righteous and you are not, he will not turn you away. You can do this because your standing with him has never been based on your righteous performance, but on the perfect obedience of your Savior. Because you are in him, you are counted by God as righteous and therefore accepted into his holy presence forever and ever and ever.
Yes, you are called to live a holy life, but your way of living has not been and never will be the basis of your standing with God. You can bow at his feet and confess your sins, knowing that you will receive grace and not punishment, because righteous Jesus took the full brunt of your penalty so that you would never, ever bear it. Ephesians 3: 12 reminds us that in Christ we can have boldness and confidence through our faith in him. So when you fail again today, where will you run?
Tripp, Paul David (2014-10-31). New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional (Kindle Locations 1703-1721). Crossway. Kindle Edition.
Wow. I know I needed to hear this today. How about you? We can run from our failure or we can run to Christ! Let’s choose to run to Him. – Bill Welte is President/CEO of America’s Keswick
Think About This: Since your standing with God is based not on your righteousness but on Christ’s, in moments of failure, you can run to him and not from him. Dr. Paul David Tripp
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: But as for me, I will walk in my integrity;
Redeem me and be merciful to me. Psalm 26:11