Tuesday, October 9, 2007


a wise man once said, “i’m either up or i’m getting up but i am never down.”

recovering from failure starts with accepting that failure, which leads to understanding and then ultimately to learning from the failure, provided you are paying attention long enough to see the point.
learning from our failures, or mistakes, is not only key but a paramount necessity in this life. however, all too often what happens is the opposite, we live in the moment. we almost welcome the depression, if only to prove to others how we have survived, because everyone loves the tough survivor type.
tattoos are the rage these days you know. we carve our mistakes on our arms for everyone to see. we are told we are tougher for having been through an ordeal but we never do anything about it really. we don’t learn from it, we just make a plaque. we don’t use the opportunity to grow, we blame someone or something else and then do it again. after all we’re vindicated for our actions, or more aptly our mistakes. it must be the way we were raised, or where we were brought up, or the car we drive or the clothes we wear that makes us do the bad things we do. those things are what make us experience the failures in life.
now, let me step off the soapbox for a second and explain a few things. first, accepting failure means taking responsibility for yourself. you are not, nor will you ever be while on this planet, perfect. the crap you buy or the pills you take will not fix this problem. accept who you are for who you are, an imperfect being. now accept something else, God loves you for who you are now, he’s not waiting until you get yourself through therapy.
look around. the people you see that are the happiest are not that way because they have money. it’s not because they took a better pill or spent more time with the shrink. it’s not because they live in a nicer part of town or drive a nicer car. what sets the happy people apart is no secret. in fact your mother has been telling you for years. of course we all think our parents are outmoded and simply have no clue, so we stopped listening a long time ago.
mom always said, if you don’t have something nice to say don’t say anything at all (love your neighbor). mom always said, you get what you get and you don’t throw a fit (contentment). dad always said, if you don’t have time to do something right the first time the second time will be worse (focus). dad always said, we’ll get there when we get there (patience).
we are so self absorbed in our own lives that we miss so much. when we experience failure we wrap ourselves in it. then failure throws a saddle on us and rides us until we’re broken. and we buy into it every time. stop.
secondly, learning from our failures is really quite simple. when confronted with a mistake, accept it and look at it for a second. then ask one question. God, what can you show me from this that will make me a better person so that i might be more equipped for the next time? don’t spend time analyzing it or telling everyone you know, take it to God.
God is standing at the plate of your life, ready to hit that failure out of the park. you have to serve it up (and lay it down) for God to take it and teach you through it all. (pardon the baseball reference but it is october).
third and last is this. after accepting your failure and then learning from it with God’s help, move on. self deprecating behavior is not flattering, no matter how tight your jeans are or how great you look in that muscle shirt. your learning from a failure will do more good in your life as well as everyone else’s, than wasting away declaring how bad things are around you. move on.
and it’s not the happy people that want you to move forward, it’s all the pretentious self important people who feel you’re stealing their lime light. so get over it and move on, because i promise you, there are many more failures headed your way. it is an unfortunate byproduct of who we are. but there is hope. as you learn from the past, it will help you be prepared for the future and whatever this life throws at you. this explains the happy people.
they are not wallowing. they are not worried about tomorrow, at least not so you can see. they are content with what they have. they are nice to their neighbors and friends and even the strangers they come in contact with. they are patient. and they take the time to do some things right. are they perfect? not by a long shot. but they are learning as they go and becoming wiser for it.
learn to love those around you. be content with what you have. focus on the important things. and be patient. your failures will seem mighty small when your energy isn’t completely sapped from shining a spotlight on them for everyone to see.
forgive others for their shortcomings, and know that God forgives you for yours. then you can learn to forgive yourself. then you can move on. then you can find some happiness. besides, i know a few people that might want their soap box back.

my life is not mine, and yet it is mine to live for Him. Peace to you all.


danny graham said...

Failure to properly handle failure is a huge problem for us all.. Good blog! - Danny

jolielee said...

thanks. thats good.

one of the only things my dad has said to me that stuck is that when bad things happen dont ask god why ask him what it is you want me to learn from this.

good stuff