What’s on top of my to-do list today? Fail.
Don’t misunderstand. Failing terrifies me. It reminds me of that recurring dream when I’m suddenly back in High School standing in front of a class I didn’t take, supposed to give a speech I didn’t write, wearing less than any Chicagoan in winter would ever wear.
In my cynical adult eyes, failure is NO fun. It means I’ve tried and it didn’t work. I set a goal that was never reached. I stumbled and fell.
It’s embarrassing. Discouraging. And gives me endless reasons to beat myself up.
Interestingly, that view of failure – as no fun – is only a construct. A learned attitude, and not a helpful one.
My two-year old broccoli-hating twins, don’t see failure that way at all.
They see failure as a:
Put a coveted toy just out of reach on a couch too tall to climb, and their eyes light up with glee. They reach. They stretch. One knee almost gets on to the cushion top, and they tumble and fall.
They scramble back over. More determined than the first time. That toy, which was only mildly interesting a minute ago is now the holy grail.
N-O-T-H-I-N-G dare stand in their way.
They try. They fall. They improvise. Their desire strengthens. They reach, they stretch, they learn, they conquer.
Wild cheers erupt. They’re convinced they are amazing (which they are), and they look in wonder at their prize…
and then throw it on the ground… because in truth, it wasn’t the goal at all.
The goal, the desire, the gain was in the growing, stretching, learning, and conquering even the couch-high hill.
That’s why I hope I fail today. Failure means I’m living all-in, fully alive.
God’s been stretching me lately, gulp, and here are some of my latest attempts in learning:
- I’m writing a stand-alone Money Mindsets course (and I’m terrified to release it because this topic is sooooooo sticky).
- I’m dreaming of hosting a “Generosity Networking” virtual event (and I’ve never even seen this type of thing done before).
- I’m sending you this email encouraging you to fail (and that’s not exactly a popular line of thought 🤣).
I’m failing forward today.
How about you?
What is that thing that God’s been calling you to do? That seemingly little, but actually very, very scary thing…
- Write a blog post
- Open a TikTok account
- Call a former client to see if they want to work with you again
- Offering to lead a group
- Boldly declaring how God designed you to serve in this world.
I hope you’ll join me and jump in. Why?
Failure means we’re growing.
Failure means we’re learning.
Failure means we’re stepping out of the boat onto the stormy sea and trusting God to hold us no matter what waves may come.
Failure means we care enough about people to reach out even when the results aren’t guaranteed.
Failure means we are fully alive.
Failure means we’re reaching, stretching, stumbling, growing, trusting, getting bruised, getting up again, trusting again, and breathing in God’s air of grace.
What can failure teach us today? Let’s find out.