And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Looked Like Failure
After Jesus’ crucifixion and death, the disciples thought that all of their hopes and dreams had come crashing down. They had lost all hope because the Lord of Glory was put to death. What appeared to them as a gigantic failure was actually the most incredible victory ever. Jesus conquered the grave because the grave couldn’t hold Him. Since Jesus had defeated Satan at the cross, we can have victory over death itself (Romans 7:24). The very last enemy that stood between us and eternity and the Eternal God was destroyed through Jesus’ work at Calvary; it was the death of death (1 Corinthians 15:26). What looked like failure to men and women was the greatest victory ever.
God’s Plan for Us
Jeremiah is quoted so much that it might seem to be taken out of context since he wrote that God had plans for the captives of Israel to prosper and not to fail (Jeremiah 29:11). It didn’t look like it at the time. Israel had just been taken captive, and they were now living as exiles in Babylon. All hope appeared to be gone, so Jeremiah sent an actual letter to the captives of Israel and told them that God had a plan for them–it wasn’t a plan for failure but a plan for them to succeed. God used their captivity, which certainly must have appeared as a huge failure, to bring about their repentance. That perceived failure was part of God’s plan for their life to restore them to a right relationship with Him, and it worked!
Failure as Part of the Plan
I remember being in a state of unemployment many years ago. A federal regional office that I worked for was relocating to the next state, and it wasn’t possible for our family to relocate. I thought of this as a huge failure. What was I going to do now? It ended up being a blessing in disguise. I worked for the federal government as a regional manager for Head Start, and I was a true road warrior. Sometimes I was gone for a week or more at a time, and it was very hard on all of us. I missed my wife and children so much. My heart broke every time I had to leave, and every night when I called home, I cried. God saw this and came up with another plan for me: The office would be closed and moved to another state. What at first looked like a big failure ended up being the best thing that could have ever happened to us. What if a recent failure of yours is part of God’s plan for your life? We know for sure that all things will work out for our very best, no matter what they look like at the time (Romans 8:28).
A Closing Prayer
Oh Creator God, sometimes I can’t see the future plans You have for me because I’m blinded by the failure before me. Help me to trust You no matter what things look like, and in the name of the King of kings and Lord of lords, Jesus Christ, I pray.
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