The word “failure” is defined as the lack of success. Now, for me, this phrase hits home because it really makes me think about how I desperately do not want to fail. In my life, I have fallen more times than I’d care to admit. But one thing I’ve learned is: it’s not about how hard you fall, it’s about how you get back up.
Trust me, no one knows better than me what it’s like to feel as if your entire life is a joke. You feel as if nothing you do will ever be good enough. You feel as if success is so far out of reach you’ve simply stopped aiming because you know it’s unattainable. You’ve labeled yourself as a failure and you have no idea how to get that label off.
Going through my teenage years, my family expected a lot out of me. They would always say I was going to do things right and get a good education; they said I would succeed beyond my wildest dreams. I was so afraid to let them down. I studied hard and did everything I possibly could to reach their expectations. I wanted to be everything they wanted me to be. And when I got saved, even more weight fell on my shoulders.
God called me to be a preacher and I remember literally laughing out loud because I thought: there is no way I’m minister material. Everyone held me to such a high standard and the pressure got to me. Being in the pulpit made me feel alive and made me feel like I had finally found my success. But I’m not perfect. I make mistakes. I was so scared of failing because I didn’t think I had what it took to stand in such an honorable place and speak the word of God. I didn’t know enough and I didn’t have the heart I needed to have.
I want to be a good daughter, not only to my parents, but to God. I want to fulfill all the plans He has for me. I don’t want to be afraid to let Him take over and show me the way. I let the fear of failure stand in my way of being the person God has called me to be. You see, people think I am so confident and outspoken with my faith, but on the inside, I’m screaming because no one knows the constant battle I fight. The standards I have set for myself are ones in which I can’t achieve because they’re unrealistic. I’m so afraid of failing and letting everyone down. So, I get inside of my own head. This is where I fall short.
I tried to make my life and myself perfect. There is one huge flaw in this plan: perfection is not attainable. It wasn’t meant to be. We were meant to have flaws. It’s what makes us so unique.
I want to be a great wife to my husband. I want to be fully supportive and everything he deserves. I don’t want him to have regrets about saying “I do” or choosing to live this life with me. I am terrified I will fail him. I am terrified I’m not good enough and one day he will realize that and walk out the door for good. It’s a challenge. It’s something I know will get in the way of our marriage because I’m constantly trying to do everything I can to make him see that he made the right choice in marrying me.
I want to be a great mother someday. I want to have beautiful children and raise them the right way and help them see what God has created them to do. I want them to see that their mother is a strong woman who can overcome any obstacle she faces. I want to be a role model and set the right example. I do not want to fail on the one thing I have waited my whole life for, the one thing I want so badly in life.
I do not want to fail you, my readers. I want God to flow through me straight into you. I do not want any of this to seem like it’s about me looking for attention. I want to use my experiences to help you see that healing is possible. I do not want to look like a fake, hypocritical Christian who’s trying to tell you how to live your life. I want the absolute best for you. I don’t want to go on this journey alone, nor do I want that for you.
I do not want to fail, period. And yet, every single day, I wake up and feel the same thing: failure. I’ve been working on my bachelors degree for almost four years now and I still do not have it. I’m nowhere near reaching my goal. I’m nowhere near being the person everything thinks I am or hopes I will become. I have put so much pressure on myself that I’m literally losing my mind. I don’t want to continue to feel like this.
If this speaks to you, and is something which pertains to your life, then it is time we both step aside and let God intervene on our behalf. It’s time for us to start truly trusting in God. 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 is an amazing verse to always keep in the back of your mind. It states, “We are hard-pressed (closely pursued) on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed (baffled), but not in despair; persecuted (subject to ill-treatment), but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed – always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.”
I know it’s a long one, but it’s so unique. I have put some definitions in parenthesis to hopefully help you understand a little more about what we’re going to go through as Christians and as people. We are going to face trials and we are going to face things which make us feel like we have no idea what we’re doing. They are going to make us label ourselves as failures, because they are going to hit us hard and knock us down. But trust me when I say, get back up. Jesus died so that we may live in victory.
You are a child of God and you are destined for great things. I want you to rip that failure label off and throw it away. I want you to believe that no matter what, you will succeed so long as God is by your side. We get so caught up in the things of this world and the situations that we forget to praise God for all that He has done for us. We forget to praise Him for already giving us a unique purpose that we can stand on.
I want to give you some scripture to really read and reflect on. Look at the words and really put them into your heart and apply them to your life:
2 Timothy 1:7 – “For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
Isaiah 41:10 – “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed (distressed), for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous (victorious) right hand.”
You are not a failure. In fact, that’s the opposite of truth. Success is something you can and will obtain. I have a plaque in my living room that is a constant reminder. It says, “when life is too hard to stand, kneel.” This tells us that we may feel defeated and like we will never make a difference in this world, but all we must do is call on God for help. He will pick us back up, dust us off and tell us our victory is already here. All we have left to do is receive it.
Pray this prayer with me and believe that you are more than you think you are.
Dear Heavenly Father, I come to you feeling alone and afraid. I don’t want to live my life constantly hearing the word failure. I want to believe that I am Yours and You are mine. Nothing can stand in the way of the calling you have put on my life. Even though I may falter and fall, I can still rise stronger than I was before. I believe that I am destined for success and I will reach that goal only if I believe it. I know life isn’t easy but I also know that with You as my guide, I can’t be steered in the wrong direction. Things may not always go the way I want them to, but I will trust in You and You alone. You will help me to succeed in everything that I do. I will stand stronger and I will fight harder to be the person I was meant to be. Keep Your reassurance within me and I will not fail. In Jesus’s precious name, Amen.
God bless you all.