We can either learn from our failures or fail to learn. I’ve seen some people who gave their best and failed, and from that point forward they never made any effort to try again. Think about the persistence of Edison who saw his life experiences as a learning lab: “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
Some of the main characters of the Bible, were close to success, but allowed their failure to define them:
• Abraham lied on several occasions.
• Moses had a fit of anger that kept him from entering the Promised Land.
• King Saul became so self-important that he engaged in work reserved for only a priest.
• Samson could subdue anything except his own desires.
• King David engaged in an adulterous affair.
• Peter failed time after time
The difference in the lives of these people is that some of them learned from their failures and took corrective action: The others failed to learn.
Edison also said that, “Failure is really a matter of conceit. People don’t work hard because, in their conceit, they imagine they’ll succeed without ever making an effort. Most people believe that they’ll wake up some day and find themselves rich. Actually, they’ve got it half right, because eventually they do wake up.”
As I think of Edison’s equation, I’m reminded of Paul’s words: “Knowing the time, it is already the hour for you to wake up from sleep, for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is nearly over, and the daylight is near, so let us discard the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light (Romans 13).”
Wake up to this fact: Today can be a day that you can learn from your failures, or you fail to learn. One is an attitude of strength, and the other is an attitude of weakness; and, as Edison said: “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to try just one more time.”
How about giving life another chance and trying one more time.