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Failing Forward

A Year in the Spiritual Life... Discover Your Purpose: Failing Forward


Failing Forward

Last night before I laid down my weary head around midnight, I planned out the following day, including a six a.m. wake up call. 

Six a.m. came, and went. I actually started to get up. My feet hit the floor for five seconds, but then, like a felled tree in a dense forest, I went crashing down again. With only six hours of sleep, I just could not get up. So I told myself. 

The fact is discipline is not easy. If it was, we would all be health nuts and run marathons. Nonetheless, I am called to be more disciplined and I have not been hitting the mark. 

I could get mad or become wrapped up in my failure, but a book I recently read (more on this book later this week) said “fail forward”. What a concept! Learn from your failure and let that propel you to your next “try”. 

So tomorrow, I am going to set the alarm for six, but tonight I am going to bed by ten. Lesson learned. Fail forward. 

Romans 8:1 says this: 

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 

When we are Christians, there is freedom that comes from learning the difference between condemnation and conviction. 

Condemnation is the enemy trying to pronounce you guilty and beat you up when you are no longer guilty because your sins are forgiven and you are a child of God. Condemnation brings pain and brokenness. 

Conviction is a strong feeling of guilt or censure by the Spirit of God to bring repentance: to line you back up to the word of God and lovingly correct you. Conviction brings restoration and healing. 

Colossians 2:2 says this (AMP): 

[For my concern is] that their hearts may be [a]braced (comforted, cheered, and encouraged) as they are knit together in love, that they may come to have all the abounding wealth and blessings of assured conviction of understanding, and that they may become progressively [b]more intimately acquainted with and may know more definitely and accurately and thoroughly that mystic secret of God, [which is] Christ (the Anointed One). 

So how do we know if we are feeling condemned or conviction? 

We do three things: 

1. Examine the feeling: what is the source?
Are you feeling like you should bury yourself in a hole and not come out or are you feeling the need to repent and pray? The first is condemnation, the second is conviction. 

2. Categorize the feeling: Condemnation (death) or Conviction (life)
The Bible says in Deuteronomy that God has set before us life and death, and WE choose. WE CHOOSE! So choose life today. 

3. Fail Forward (learn from it and move on)
If you have felt condemnation, seek God. Ask Him to show you how His grace really works, and begin to walk in His favor. We are no longer a slave to the feeling of condemnation, but free in Christ. 

So when the alarm sounds, I will try again, and keep trying until I succeed. I will fail forward. Like a boxer, when the bell rings, I will come out swinging. When you fall, don’t be like the commercials and say “I can’t get up”, dust yourself off and try, try, try again! 

Tell us how you fail forward! Comment below.

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