What do I do when I fail?

Posted on: July 21, 2014, by :

What should I do when I fail in my pursuit of God?

Recently I have had several students, and adults express to me their frustration when they make decisions to follow God more closely, or even for the first time, and they fail to fulfill their commitment.  These people have expressed feelings from unworthiness, to guilt, and even to disgust in themselves for failing to uphold, “their end of the bargain.” 

They tell me that they have failed again, and they struggle to understand how God will ever want them now, or they try to overcome their inadequacy in some way or another so they will be valuable to God again.  Every effort they make reveals less and less trust in who God has declared Himself to be.  Each step taken on their own, is made in vain. 

My counsel to them is the same.  Regardless of your circumstances, and regardless of your failures, God is not different now that you have failed.  He is unchanged!

At first, they don’t understand.  At first they don’t feel all that comforted. 

But then we get to dive back into the truth that God has revealed for all mankind.  We get to relook at the statements that gave us hope in the first place.  We look at the truth that the Bible gives us about God’s character, as well as, what he has said about his people.  

            *He will never leave us, nor will he forsake us. Deuteronomy 31:6
            *He is faithful and Just to cleanse us 1 John 1:9
            *He is my strength and my shield Psalm 28:7
            *He is my goal Psalm 27:4
            *He is the reason we are righteous 2 Corinthians 5:21

When we remember that we are unable to attain righteousness on our own, the failure to be perfect seems far less offensive.  We are only righteous because He makes us righteous. 

Finally, we must remember that we are called to follow Him.  Just as the apostles were each called to follow the Lord, we are asked to seek the face of Jesus each day, and follow his lead.  When we are focused on our own failures, we take our eyes off the one who can, not only save us, but can lead us to the victories He has already won. 

So, what do I do when I fail to pursue God in the way he has commanded?

-I start walking toward Him.