Panning for Gold

Failure is giving my tender heart a pretty good beating lately. There are some things in my life that I’ve repeatedly attacked with a big, fat, red-lettered “FAIL”  stamp. I tend to dwell on these things. I allow my mind to trick me into thinking the consequences of my failures are tragic to the point of no repair. Failure makes a lasting impression on me… on my soul. It shapes the way I feel about me and often blinds me from seeing anything else but my inability to succeed.

Can you relate?

It’s sad, really because even though experiencing failure is a very real thing it doesn’t mean that there are no victories at all.

Sometimes it is necessary to sift through the failures in our life to discover the many victories hidden within… much like panning for gold… if you don’t look very carefully you’ll miss them completely.

We can choose to focus on all of the things we’ve failed to accomplish or we can celebrate the things we did.

So, I do this… pan for gold in the sea of my failures and I come up with some shiny nuggets. Some victories. But as they begin to show through the mud and mire they take on a different shape… they look and feel a lot more like blessings.

Victories or blessings? The answer lies inside our perspective.

The definition of victory is:

A success or triumph over an enemy in battle or war. A success or superior position achieved against any opponent, opposition, difficulty, etc.

The definition of blessing is:

A special favor mercy, or benefit. A favor or gift bestowed by God, thereby bringing happiness.

I wonder if calling them victories implies that we are in control of our ability to succeed and if calling them blessings gives God the credit He deserves. I wonder if our focusing on them as victories is the very thing that causes our failures to take center stage. And, if instead, we focus on them as blessings then it is God’s glory that radiates.

Perhaps this is why counting our blessings makes life circumstances seem so insignificant. Either way, call them victories or call them blessings… I don’t know about you, but all failures aside… I’ve got a lot to be grateful for.

“From His abundance we have all received one gracious blessing after another.”

John 1:16NLT

 

Linking up with Shanda for On Your Heart Tuesday

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16 Responses

08.30.11

You are so right, counting our blessings each day, thanking God each day, Praising God each day makes all life’s failures seem small up against the love of our Savior. Great post!

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08.30.11

Great encouragement Heidi! We have alot to be grateful for. There may be failures but there are so many blessings.
Jenifer recently posted..Why Does It MatterMy Profile

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08.30.11

I can surely relate to you Heidi but I want you to know failure can be a blessing, I know many people don’t think so but it can be..when I fail I use it as a stepping stone to stand and grow from it. Allow my failures to bring beauty in to what was ashes. SO my sister be encouraged see it the way the Lord sees it because you are not a failure the things we do might be but you are not a failure at all. Let the Lord teach you something new here this is your ground for teaching and when He is done you will come forth as gold, pure and wiser…amen…Love ya..Lord God you know my sisters heart I ask you as you have her on the potter’s wheel that you give her the strength she needs to stay right there, when she feels like she want to get off keep her there when she feels like giving up double her faith Lord. Surround her with your peace and let her flesh and will be in submission to the Word in Jesus name I pray amen.,,He loves you Heidi and only want the best for you..it’s pruning time
Desiray recently posted..Who’s coming by?My Profile

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08.30.11

“Why should I ever resist any delay or disappointment, any affliction or oppression or humiliation – when I know God will use it in my life to make me like Jesus and to prepare me for heaven?” ~Kay Arthur

“A special favor mercy, or benefit. A favor or gift bestowed by God, thereby bringing happiness.”
I’ll join with you in calling them blessings!
Great post!
Lindsay recently posted..Confession Time {LINK UP}My Profile

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08.30.11

@Lindsay – Your Comments
Love that quote Lindsay, Amen… so very true!
Heidi recently posted..Panning for GoldMy Profile

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08.30.11

Heidi, I’m with you, I HATE failing and yet God’s track record is great. When I hand him my failures He somehow find a way to use them So thankful for His ability to redeem us.
Eileen recently posted..Move Forward…Wobble If You Have ToMy Profile

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08.30.11

I love the definitions for victory and blessing. Sometimes it is so hard for me to see beyond the thickness of dispair. It is a battleground. Wallow in the failures or allow myself to be lifted above in victory… Great post!:)

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08.30.11

ghfghzft

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08.30.11

I want to focus on the blessing and give all the glory to God. I’m painfully aware that I can’t, but becoming more aware each day that God can. Great encouragement, Heidi!

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08.30.11

This is a nice reminder that no matter what, God is in control. They are His achievements and His lessons for us to learn. Thank you!! Visiting from On Your Heart Tuesdays…
janet recently posted..Giveaway Ending Tomorrow!!!My Profile

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So very true! Even when God makes something amazing out of my perceived failures, I still find myself focusing on the failure part! I’m doing it now. Thanks for the reminder to stop focusing on those things!
Mel @ Trailing After God recently posted..How Do I Really Know? by Shanyn SilinskiMy Profile

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08.30.11

Heidi,

I can totally relate to this, I am not good at handling failure, so often I think I am out of God’s Will when I fail at something, but there are so many blessings and successes that can be found through our failures. Sometimes out of the ashes of our failures God makes something beautiful.

Blessings.
Kandi recently posted..there’s a butterfly on my sandwichMy Profile

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08.30.11

Great thoughts, Heidi. I think I would rather call them blessings! Unless it is the victory we have over death, that we have only because of Christ. Guess that also is a blessing, huh?
Shanda recently posted..Thank You, I Feel BlessedMy Profile

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08.30.11

I like the term blessings….that way He gets all the credit and I take none! I am not able to do anything without the power He displays through me…

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Great, encouraging post Heidi! Seeing through our trials and focusing on God’s gifts in our lives can be difficult when we’re in the “thick of it”, but it’s also the best way to put things in the perspective they belong to.

To God goes the glory… I’ll count my Blessings! 🙂

Have a Blessed Day!
Phil D. Malmstrom recently posted..Praying in ArroganceMy Profile

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08.30.11

I’ve been thinking so much about gratitude lately, but I hadn’t gotten to framing my failures as something in which to find gratitude. I love this — I know that He can redeem everything — that alone is cause to give thanks.
Jen recently posted..Casting Idols & Soli Deo Gloria PartyMy Profile

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