Living Like a Tea Bag

Vol.6, No. 11– March 14, 2021

Living Like a Tea Bag

Psalm 37:23-24

The steps of a man are established by the Lord, when He delights in His way; though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the Lord upholds his hand.  –Psalm 37:23-24

I have come through a lot of failure in life—things have not always worked out like I think they should. I think I have a lot of company. The fact I have missed my mark, reminds me that God has a mark for me. Failures often remind us that we are not yet finished. These life events can be the bridge to the faith life instead of a barricade to life.

Failures often look like facts. Really it is most often an opinion. It is not how hard we fall, but what we do in response to the event that makes a difference for who we are under the eyes of our great God.

Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much, nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory or defeat. –Theodore Roosevelt

One of the riskiest things we can do in life is to take too many precautions—and then have the mindset that we have never made any mistakes in our choices. Some of our greatest learning experiences is teetering on the edge of disaster. The Scriptures are full of descriptions of faithful men and women taking risk with the confidence of having God in their presence.

In my teaching and preaching experience, I found that when I tried something and failed, I was actually better off than not doing anything, and was successful. That did not teach me anything worthwhile keeping. When I counsel young pastors, I remind them that the preacher that never makes a mistake probably gets really tired of not doing much to move forward. Life is full of risk opportunities—if we do not risk we are not trying much.

One book that I read said If you do not drown by falling in the water, you drown by staying there. The encouragement then is get up and go on.

Dreams do not die because of unsuccess or mistake. Death of a dream comes through indifference and apathy. The best way to proceed following a mistake or failure is to learn from the event and ask the Lord to help you forget the details. It is also a help to pray that God would block your steps should you go toward that direction again. God is full of mercy and grace.

Life Application

Failures and mistakes can be a weight upon our lives, or they can give us wings. We cannot make a “comeback” unless we are willing to go on. It is interesting to listen to those experiencing success. 99% of people who are successful living under God, are those who are built up with God’s grace and mercy following former failures and mistakes.

Success is failure turned inside out, the silver tint of the clouds of doubt, and you never can tell how close you are, it may be near, when it seems so far. So stick to the fight when you are hardest hit, it is when things seem worse, that you must not quit. –Unknown

If you do not experience failure and mistake, you are like a tea bag that has never been dipped into hot water. You just live in false safety wanting never to get boiled.

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Written by Dr. Larry Lightner

March 14, 2021

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