God Uses Your Mistakes, Failures for Good
“Did all your experience mean nothing at all? Surely it meant something!” (Galatians 3:4 GNT)
You can learn a lot from your experiences — good and bad. To apply them to your work, you have to go back over time and ask, “Where was I successful and where was I not? Where was I fulfilled and where was I not? What got me excited about work?”
All of the lessons for your life are there in your experiences; you just have to spend time examining them. When you do, you’ll see that in every failure are the seeds of success — if you learn from them.
Galatians 3:4 says, “Did all your experience mean nothing at all? Surely it meant something!” (GNT)
Years ago I met an older gentleman who told me how getting laid off was the best thing that ever happened to him. He was 40 years old and had worked his entire life in a saw mill when his supervisor came in one day and told him he was fired — no severance, no retirement, nothing. He had no other skills, no other job training. When he went home and told his wife what happened, she said, “What are you going to do now?” He responded, “I guess I’m going to do what I’ve always wanted to do. I’m going to mortgage our home and go into the building business.”
His first venture was the construction of two small motels, but within five years, he was a multimillionaire. The man was named Wallace Johnson, the co-founder of the Holiday Inn hotel chain. At one point, it was one of the world’s largest hotel chains.
Wallace told me that if he could locate the man who fired him, he would thank him for what he had done. At the time, Wallace didn’t understand why he was fired. Only later could he see that it was God’s unerring and wondrous plan to get him fired in order to get him into the career he was shaped to do.
Maybe God’s taken you through an unexpected failure that you didn’t understand at the time, but now you see that it shaped you into who you are today. Maybe you’re in the middle of something like that right now. Trust that God will use your circumstances to show you what he shaped you to do and how you can use your life to serve him.
Talk It Over
- What have you learned from the failures in your life?
- Are you experiencing a failure right now? How do you think God wants you to respond?
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