How To Deal With Failure
Lovely ladies, there comes a time when you will experience failure. It seems as though you are in the midst of drowning and clutching at straws to save yourself.
In these moments, you really don’t see how your failures can be used by God for your good. You feel the weight of the world on your shoulders and think that no one but you can really understand what you’re going through. But, my dears, there is One who personally knows, cares and stands with you. He waits for you to run to Him. Not to wallow in self-pity or meditate on your failures, but rather, to choose to trust in His promises. These are the times when you will find your greatest strength because you rely on the greatest source when you are out of everything to give.
I recently went through a season that was filled with what the world would define as huge fails. My academic term was a mess, my health was plummeting both because of personal neglect and specific health complications that were out of my control. My faith, as a result, started dwindling. I started to entertain all the doubts about whether I was as beloved as God said I was.
This season was also an emotionally challenging one for me when it came to my personal relationships. Even though my family is always there for me, it was different this time because of unexpected tensions. I felt as though I was walking alone. As for those who wanted to help, I shut them out because my thinking was that if the people who were supposed to be there for me are not there, how can I expect others to be. Overburdened by it all one day, I threw in the towel because at this point I had no idea which one of my cares needed my attention more. All I remember is feeling numb and paralyzed, and the only question in my mind was “God, what's next?” I literally felt like I was breathing in His strength.
These times really test our faith and our ability to stand strong. Because we can be the greatest enemy to ourselves. However, at this moment, I chose to be my best encourager by leaning into His Word. I chose to actively chase after and rely on God that day. Although my mind was screaming that this was my mess and that I had to figure it out on my own, my heart knew He was waiting for me to surrender it all, so that is exactly what I did. My last and only resort at this point was to trust Him to take me through this.
His Word says that He is a good God and that He will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5-6). There was no me, just all Him. There was also a gentle reminder that the spiritual battle is of greater worth and importance than the physical one, so I chose to hold onto His promises.
“For we wrestle not against flesh or blood, but against principalities, power, against the rulers of the darkness of this age.” -Ephesians 6:12
The spiritual battle is the first that we have to win, then all else will follow. And even in that battle, we don’t fight alone.
On that blessed day, I decided to do something easy yet extraordinary in the midst of pain and prayers. I went into the bathroom, looked at the mirror and chose to smile out of gratitude when a wave of tears gushed out of my eyes at the reflection staring back at me. The tears that I shed were not out of self-pity, but because I saw immense strength, grace, faith, and beauty staring back at me.
I got a glimpse of myself through God’s eyes. I saw in my weakness how strong and exalted He was by my choosing to stand firm in His promises and thankful that He was my portion through it all. How much more beautiful life would be if we looked at these moments through His eyes!
His Word says that He gives us “peace that surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:7). At that moment I truly felt what it was to have a peace that is not jilted by the worries of this world. I even felt a bit crazy smiling at such a time. But that is the type of incomprehensible peace given by our Father: it simply baffles the human mind as we choose to lay our burdens at His feet, knowing He’s able to carry it all. I knew deep down in my heart that this too shall pass, and I snagged the opportunity to live out His truth.
I reminded myself of His promises that never fail: “‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you,’ says the Lord, ‘thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:11-13).
These verses were a gentle reminder that my life is not about me but built to capacitate Him and His glory. This encounter shifted my entire perspective and now all I could do was be still and allow Him to continually transform my heart and mind through the season.
It is God that acts in us when we put our faith and trust in Him and act contrary to our human nature. Our human nature fails and will have us falling into a vicious cycle of fear, doubt, guilt, and shame. But the Holy Spirit within us provides us with the strength, faith, and courage (and even a beautiful smile when it is hard to give) that just cannot come through human nature, but only through the Greater One. When the world looks and sees that, despite being in the midst of the storm and the miry clay, we can still stand and continue living with love and perfect peace, then we must only know of a greater promise and hope that keeps us grounded. Let this story be a reminder that God is always able to fulfill His promises, even when the situation may look otherwise; rest assured that He always will.
“Glory be to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” Ephesians 3:20-21
He is not constrained by our human inability, rather His strength is exalted in our very obvious weaknesses and shortcomings.
“‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
Sisters, my hope and challenge to us all is that when we are tested with a season of challenges and failures, we will grab hold of it as an opportunity to embrace the situation with the supernatural grace and strength that God has gifted to us. I pray that we will run to God and pour our hearts out to Him and choose to love and trust Him.
Despite our circumstances, we will rejoice, because we know of the greatest truth the world has to offer and have access to the most powerful love the world will ever know. When we fail, we are given the opportunity to know Him deeper, trust Him more, and see the kind of strength and peace that graces our lives, peace the world can never understand but will always seek to know.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Aneesa, in her early twenties, was born and raised in Guyana, South America and left in 2016 to pursue her Bachelors of Science at McMaster University in Canada. She loves a good novel (biographies lately), spontaneous adventures, spending time with family, and enjoys deep conversations. She is an avid traveler and has a heart for people, especially in developing countries and hopes to one day have a career that surrounds investing in their life. All in all, a simple girl who lives one day at a time knowing that her God is faithful to finish what He started as she seeks to obey and trust Him daily.