Have you ever wished you could rewind time and have a do-over? Or, re-set the clock to something you wished you had taken a few extra minutes to really process before making your next move?
Maybe you have recently found yourself saying…
- If only I had ____________________ (fill in the blank…)
- Why did I ______________________
- What was I thinking when ______________________
Ugh! Me too!
I failed miserably this past week because I ignored some potential red flags, pretending the warning signs weren’t really that significant. Basically, I delayed having a super hard conversation with someone, and because of that, it all ended up being super hard anyways! All it would have taken was an initial, awkward phone call and everything would have been okay.
The cost of ignoring the potential problem greatly affected not just me, but several others.
Not very fun.
Recently I read the book Me, Myself & Bob by Phil Vischer, the creator of Veggie Tales. It was so good! I have such fond memories of watching Veggie Tales with my kids, so it was great to read about all he went through to launch his company. He was quite a dreamer, and quite not very good at business!
Phil ends up losing everything, and it’s painful to read about because you just love the creative genius that he is. The last line on the back of the book says, “Phil shares an amazing story that shows how God can use our failures and the death of a dream to point us toward true success.”
My failure involved having to give up something I felt defined me.
It’s not been easy… at all… but it’s been necessary.
I’ve taken some time to process what I went through and how I went through it, and maybe you can find yourself in one of the steps below. I’d love to encourage you right where you are on your journey of acknowledging failure and moving past it.
Here is what failure and the beginning of recovery looked like for me:
—An acknowledgement of all that went wrong and a desperate plea for help as I surrendered it all to God.
Mourn the loss
–Failure is painful and almost always results in some type of loss. I’m a big proponent of feeling all the feels when something goes wrong. The goal is to take as much time as you need in this step, but not get stuck here. You really do have to move on.
Re-commit and more surrender
—I am all for analyzing what went wrong and what needs to change moving forward. And it’s completely true… we do learn so much from failure. I have a friend who often encourages me to fail fast, learn from it, and move on.
Deep breaths (physically calm yourself down)
—I used to laugh when people offered this as a way to fight off anxiety. Not. Any. More. Deep, belly breaths work wonders in bringing a calming effect throughout the entire body.
Take the first step in a new direction
—I’m not sure where I heard this quote, but it speaks life to me as I’m coming off a difficult week: The adventure is not over, it has just changed.
Let me say that again…
The adventure is not over, it has just changed.
I love that!!
One of my favorite passages in Scripture totally supports that quote. It’s found in Ephesians 3:20 and I LOVE The Message translation of it:
“God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.”
I pray that you feel his Spirit working in you, deeply and gently, in whatever adventure God is taking you on.