1 Oct 2013

Failure isn't final. Grace is.



Real, exaggerated, painful, fuzzy, cloudy, dragged-out…many circumstances can make us feel like we failed.

Life is too rich and layered for us to plot onto spreadsheets or subject to the see-saw of a cost-benefit analysis. Results and outcomes can be hard to measure; and the enemy loves to sidle up and whisper ‘what a let down’, ‘this is so disappointing’, or more directly, ‘you failed!’.


Whether we made a bad decision, or we feel at the mercy of difficult people and situations; a sense of having failed, being left in the cold by God, losing our way can crowd into our hearts and weigh it with heaviness. It can fog up our minds and even make us throw in the towel. Just give up!

Ask Peter.

Jesus even pre-empted his failure with a warning; but his quick words of denial turned around like a boomerang and knocked him over. The next time we read, he has gone back to fishing.

You and I have read this story countless times. Today though, I hear something more. I connected this failure with other failures. I thought of Moses losing his cool and losing his chance of going into the Promised Land. What a high price! I remember my daughter asking me as she read Genesis, “why did God put that tree there?”.  Yes, sometimes, it can feel like God has set us up to fail. Surely, the Almighty can help Peter bite his tongue and Moses cool over for once?

Why does God let us fail?

More importantly, what does God do when we fail? 


He rushes to us with Tenderness. {which also shows how he feels}

 Adam and Eve receive a garment God personally stitches together.
Moses is laid to rest by God’s own hand.
Peter is fed Jesus-baked fish on a shore.

God becomes personal, and He personally delivers us even as we feel the heaviness of our failure.

He clothes us
"and the LORD God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them"
He closes the chapter
"the LORD said to him, 'this is the land...and he buried him  in the valley.."
He commissions us afresh
"..feed my sheep.."

We think our gleaming trophies are what brings God glory. Success is the processed diet we have been fed that has left our immunity weak; making us vulnerable to lies and despair.

We must make changes to our diet, to ‘taste and see that the LORD is good’ – especially where we feel are failures. For our failures are never final. Grace is.




~ Grace flows downwards ~
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