Jennifer Slattery writes soul-stirring fiction for New Hope Publishers, a publishing house passionate about bringing God’s healing grace and truth to the hopeless. She also writes for Crosswalk.com, Internet Café Devotions, and the group blog, Faith-filled Friends. When not writing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.
Visit with Jennifer online at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com and connect with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/JenSlatte
What If Failure Was Not an Option?
by Jennifer Slattery
What might you attempt if you knew you couldn’t fail?
Did an activity come to mind, perhaps a long-suppressed dream?
Here’s another question: Do you know you have a call? Something God created you to do; something that will fulfill you like nothing else? That thing is different for each of us, but God planted it in every one of us. Gordon T. Smith, author of Courage and Calling says, “God longs for us to be, precisely, all that we are called to be.” (pg. 20, emphasis mine.)
So what is it God created you to do? And what’s keeping you from pursuing that thing with everything you’ve got?
For most of us, the answer is fear of failure.
Fear of pouring ourselves into something for decades, maybe even a lifetime, with nothing to show for it.
A very real possibility if we measure our success or failure based on worldly things like:
And yet, I believe God’s version of success goes much deeper. We look at the outside—what we can check off a list or measure tangibly. God looks at what’s inside—how pliable and surrendered our heart is. Who we truly love, Who we truly serve. And really, Who we trust.
Because when we get that right, everything else follows.
“Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people” (Colossians 3:23 NLT).
God’s opinion is the only one that matters, and He is the only One who can bring our dreams and goals to fruition. More than that, He was the One that placed those dreams and goals in our heart in the first place. “For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Phil. 2:13).
In other words, as you draw near to God, He will reveal His will to you, stirring within you a desire to do that which He created you to do. As you respond with obedience, He grows you—your heart, your faith, your gifts, and your talents—to be the best writer, dancer, Bible teacher, mother, father, sister… possible.
Because we were made to do great things—things that will matter for all eternity.
Isn’t it time to get started? Failure isn’t an option, because if God is for us who (or what) can stand against us? (Romans 8:31)
Abandoned by her husband for another woman, Tammy Kuhn, an organ procurement coordinator often finds herself in tense and bitter moments. After an altercation with a doctor, she is fighting to keep her job and her sanity when one late night she encounters her old flame Nick. She walks right into his moment of facing an unthinkable tragedy. Because they both have learned to find eternal purposes in every event and encounter, it doesn’t take long to discover that their lives are intertwined but the ICU is no place for romance….or is it? Could this be where life begins again?
What a great question, Jennifer. “If God is for us, who (or what) can stand against us?”
What holds you back from doing what God has called you to do? What are you going to do to change it?
For me, fear holds me back–of rejection, of what others will think, or of doing it wrong. But I’m learning that sometimes God allows us to experience the things we fear in order to show us that it’s not really as bad as we make it out to be.