The Barrier of Failure

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Week#3 of our “Barriers to Going Beyond” Series

The Barrier of Failure

We tend to let the barriers of life stop us from Going Beyond We don’t like the feelings that come with failure. No one gets out of life without failing. No one is perfect, but somehow we think that when we fail, we’re the only one. Every successful person knows that failure is a part of life, but every successful person also knows that you can’t let failure stop you. Society tells us that if we don’t have certain things, we’re failures. We can’t listen to society though. We all fail every day.  How do you define failure?

  • A lack of success?
  • An unrealized goal?
  • Quitting?

90% of our perceived failures have to do with not living up to other people’s expectations. Success has to do with being in favor with God, not with society, the world, or other people. The problem is that we fail even when we’re in favor with God. David – “a man after God’s own heart.” Also, “coveter”, “murderer”, “adulterer”, etc Elijah – “Great Prophet”, also “ran away in fear”

Paul – “great evangelist / witness / teacher for Christ”, also persecuted and arrested Christians

1. Failure is a result of our efforts

To fail from time to time is human, but to be a failure is to never rise above where you’re at. If we fail to admit our faults/mistakes, we’re kind of a double failure. Proverbs 28:13 – “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” Failure applies to everyone. Proverbs 14:12 – “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” It’s always possible to claim success if we set our standards low enough, but God has called us to much greater standards.

“If you want to make people happy, serve them ice cream, don’t challenge them.”
2. Failure is full of opportunities
At the very least, failure shows you what doesn’t work.
Proverbs 20:30 – “Blows that wound cleanse away evil; strokes make clean the innermost parts.”

Remember the lesson of the whale: just when you come up to the surface to blow, you get harpooned. Proverbs 16:18 – “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” Failure brings us the opportunity to serve others because we fail too. Proverbs 29:25 – “The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.” People think they fail because of other people’s opinions.  Don’t trust in people, trust in God.

If you make mistakes, at least you’re trying. 


3. Failure develops faithfulness

When you think of your connection to Christ, how long have you been in ministry? Everyone is a minister of Christ, not just those on staff at your local church. Philippians 3:13-16 – “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.” People will criticize you for following God. Proverbs 3:3 – “Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.” No matter what is happening in our lives, our job is to remain faithful to God. Don’t give up too soon. Keep being faithful. Failure is never final unless you let it be.