By Robert White

Dr. Robert White was raised in central Florida and completed his Bachelor’s degree at the University of Central Florida. After college, he completed the Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees at Luther Rice Seminary in Atlanta, Georgia. For more than 40 years he has served as pastor of churches in Florida and in Massachusetts. In October 2016, Dr. White joined Care For Pastors as a Pastoral Counselor/Coach. Robert currently resides with his wife, Kaye, in Leesburg, Florida.

    Four Key Ways to Deal with Failure

    Wednesday, October 06, 2021

    The entire world at times seems to be paralyzed by fear. The pandemic has brought out deeply rooted fears in all of us. There are more than 500 known human fears that people experience from time to time. It is estimated that about 50 million people in the United States suffer from some type of phobia in their lifetime. The Bible declares that fear is not in God’s will for our lives. (See 2 Timothy 1:7) Here are some important principles to help us deal with fear.

    Remember The Fact of Failure

    “For we all stumble in many ways.” James 3:2

    We all fail, fail often, and we will continue to fail until we die. Successful people fail two out of five times and unsuccessful people fail three out five times. Failure is a fact of life, but it does not have to define who you will become.

    Reject the Fear of Failure

    In America, we hate losers and love winners. No one wants to be called a “failure”, so we fear failure.

    • The fear of failure can cause you to be indecisive.
    • It can cause you to be a workaholic because you are afraid someone is going to get ahead of you.
    • It can lead you to be a perfectionist because you are always worried that what you are doing is never going to be good enough. You are afraid people won’t like you.
    • Some people are so afraid of failure that it keeps them from even trying.

    You can move beyond failure by leaving it behind. Refuse to allow the failure to keep you down. If you fear failure, then your tendency will be to take it with you everywhere. The fear of failure tends to attract failure. There is a difference between failing and being a failure. You are never a failure. If you quit or give up at the first sign of resistance, then you might experience failure more often.

    Failure is a fact of life, not a way of life. We are all going to fail. The question that remains is, “How will we respond to failure?”

    Rejoice in the Face of Failure

    John Maxwell once said, “Failure is a tutor and not a judge.”

    • Mistakes are meant to teach us. We can make mistakes and then figure out what doesn’t work. When we discover enough things that don’t work, we might even figure out what does work.
    • It is not a tragedy to fail. It is a tragedy when you don’t learn anything from the failure. You can turn a failure into a success.
    • In failure God teaches us humility. If we never failed in life, if everything we touched turned to gold, if every game we played we won, if everything we did always succeeded, we would be very difficult to live with. God allows failure to come into our lives to keep us humble and to teach us to depend on HIM.

    One Failure from Which You Can Never Recover

    “Be careful that no one fails to receive God’s grace.” Hebrews 12:15

    Don’t fail to receive the grace of God. Anyone who fails to receive God’s grace for salvation will not only fail in this life but also in the next. Eternal damnation is a failure from which you will never recover.

    In the coming weeks and months, we will all experience some form of failure.  It is the nature of human beings to fail.  What we must remember is that there is a God who is so loving and powerful, so filled with grace and mercy, that He is able to turn failures into successes, defeats into victories, and tragedies into triumphs.  What a great God we serve.

    Dr. James Clark wrote a series of articles he called, "Fax for Life." In one of those articles, he addressed the problem of failure. His notes and outline were adapted in the writing of this blog.

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