Wednesday, June 4, 2014

F is for Failure

I know who wants to write about failure. It is not the topic that we want to talk about. We don't like to fail at something especially something that we consider ourselves to be good at. We want to succeed.

The disciples went back to fishing. Just days before their leader had been crucified. Then women meet him at the tomb and Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee and there they will see me." (Matthew 28:10 ESV) The disciples head back to Galilee and while they are waiting. The disciples went back to fishing. That was their livelihood before Jesus had called them to follow him. They went out at night and fished. These were experienced fishermen but they caught nothing, not even a little fish. That was not a fishing success. The thing they were good at they were failing.

Then in the midst of their failure, they hear a voice calling to them. "Children, do you have any fish?" (John 21:5 ESV) Such a simple question. That simple question moved the focus from what they were doing to someone who was calling them.

After he hears their admission of failure, he makes a suggestion. It is just a little change but this small change has big results. "Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some." (John 21:6 ESV) They listened to the suggestion from the stranger on the beach and cast the net on the other side. It was a small change but the results were big, 153 fish.

Peter recognised the stranger on the beach. It was the Lord! Jesus came to them. He met them when they were failing. He prompted a change but then something bigger planned.

Jesus invited the to eat, the picture of rest and peace. Then he asks Peter to do something even bigger than what he had been doing. Jesus wants us to be involved in what he is doing. Jesus doesn't need help but he asks for our help. The disciples went back to something familiar, something that had been easy in the past. A place where they had been successful.

I hate failing. I have failed tests and even classes. I fail in my goals. What do you do when you fail? Do you give up? Do you listen to suggestions and prompts from the Holy Spirit? Are you willing to make changes? Are you willing to put all of that aside for something different?

It is the end of the school year or almost the end. We are finishing books and as we finish a few of them I feel like we failed. We didn't cover and learn the way I might have liked. Am I listening to myself in the failure or am I am listening to God?

I need to be ready to listen, to make the little changes that are needed, and see what God is going to do. God can speak to us in our failures.

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  1. Keep your eyes on God and remember that He can make something out of nothing! Even our "failures!"

  2. i know that feeling! Like you failed at so much homeschooling.... Gotta remember to keep my eyes where they belong though....

  3. Thanks! I enjoyed reading this as I have been reflecting on joy and being willing to put all "that" aside for something different ("better"). It's worth the risk :)

  4. I know that feeling thankfully we can lean on God and he will strengthen us!



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