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Failure and Recovery (Part 4)

Fourth, in order to recover from failure we must renew his resolve to accomplish the calling his Father has given us. Be careful, this step often feels like an opportune time for personal strength, resolutions, vows, and promises, and the devil will tempt you to conclude these will renew the call of God in your life. But self-strength is weakness and a perversion of what God intended. Christianity is about dependence.

God is not interested in what you can do for Him. No matter how productive your flesh, no matter how iron-clad your will, no matter how determined you are to produce something for God, He simply is not that poor. I encourage you: Don’t buy the enemy’s lie asserting you can live the Christian life through determination and promises. Besides being impossible, it is an affront to your Father and is contrary to the lifestyle exemplified by Jesus, the perfect man.

Your Father never intended for you to live the Christian life because it is not your life to live. It is Christ’s life to live. Your call is to allow Him to live His life in you and through you. Your call is to trust Him by depending upon your Father. Your call is to give life your best shot with these tenets as your rallying cry.

As I sat down to write today I had two prayers to choose from . On the one hand I could pray and say, “Dear Father: As I prepare to begin writing today I ask you to help me. Amen.” On the other hand, I could pray, “Dear Father: As I prepare to begin writing today I trust you to express yourself through my personality, talents, and gifts to say what is on Your heart. Amen.&#148

While these two prayers are similar, they are far from synonymous. To implore God to help me implies I have ability apart from Him. If He were to opt out of helping me there would still be the possibility a successful work of literature could be produced. The second prayer acknowledges dependence and presumes a determination on my part to trust Him and not my own resources. The first prayer is a prayer anchored in the strength of the flesh and is not indicative of real masculinity. The second prayer is anchored in Christ and dependence upon the Father. This prayer renews my determination to hold my station in life.

Don’t get me wrong, both prayers may yield literary work that communicates effectively. However, there is one minor problem: That is not the goal. The goal is to depend upon my Father and be a strong man. Writing this book is secondary in importance.

From this prayer perspective, the glory, as well as the responsibility, is Father’s. The satisfaction and joy of a job well done is ours to share as a Father-son team. Failure is always a signal flare reminding us to renew our resolve to be strong men who are depending upon our Father.

Next week we’ll cover the 5th R: Recover.

Preston Gillham

About the Author

As a co-founder, Preston Gillham led Lifetime for 30 years. Preston is a writer, speaker, and leadership guide. He has authored numerous articles and several books including No Mercy and Battle for the Round Tower. He blogs on “Life and Leadership”. More about Preston, his writings, speaking, and his consulting practice can be located at PrestonGillham.com.