I've been thinking alot about this these days. Gene once came to Lithia and gave us a series of messages entitled "Wonderful Things to Fail At." We generally associate failure with loss, sadness, disappointment, poverty, lack of direction. I'm choosing to look at it differently.
I'll take Kiplings point of view:
"If you can meet with triumph and disaster and treat those two imposters just alike.." (from If)
If I'm failing, it means I'm trying something. I'm headed in a direction. I'm aiming for something that has the chance of success. But it's not so much the goal that matters, its the living. I want to live life as a failure. Someone who had an AIM, and even if they didn't reach it, they wasted their life trying.
Understand, this is all in my head. This is all a THEORY.
Because I got a verbal warning at work last week and have felt like a no-good, sucky, worthless nurse who second guesses herself ever since. (It wasn't a mistake of action, it was a mistake of saying something stupid in the office.) I judge myself very harshly. In my view I totally failed. It's not acceptable. I think "I should just resign. I'm terrible at this." This thought has been pressing on my emotions all week, the pit of despair ("don't even think about trying to escape") looming in my waking moments. The grey shade of depression closing over my window of happiness. The panic baiting my breathing into a rapid pace. The memory of darkness coming to the forefront of my thoughts.
It's only a memory, Sarah. It isn't today. It's not what you're feeling now, it's how you felt then. It's just a memory.
At the same time, I have this Failure Theory reverberating in my semi-conciousness.
Did I ever connect the two? Heck no!
Not, that is, until tonight, when I sat with a group of sisters in the Lord who reminded me that nothing can seperate me from Him. Not the good I do, not the bad I do, not anything I do. So this failure of last week, is indeed the failure of my theory, and I can find Him in it. I can!!! They bust up the theory with their reality sticks, and make it a TRUTH. Whether I succeed or I fail, I am IN HIM. I am on a Purpose Road.
Bonnie told this story tonight:
She and her husband were on a six lane road, and it was really crowded, but there were people who were going slowly on the road, and it was very frustrating to him, so he slammed his hand on the steering wheel and said "Don't these people know that this is a purpose road? That people who are driving on this road have somewhere they need to get to, and something they need to do? Why are they trying to slow everyone down?"
Well, we all just gasped. You can bet you will hear that phrase round here for a while to come.
We are on a Purpose Road. Whether we succeed or fail (to normal standards) we are driving toward the Purpose. It is a wonderful thing to fail at.