FAILURE IS NOT
Failure among many things, is not the absence of success.
Isn’t failure the opposite of success? Someone asked because that’s she had been taught by her teachers both secular and otherwise. But hey, look closely into this scripture before us today and you will agree with me that failure is not the absence of success.
My weekend musing on 1 kings 18:41-45
And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain.
So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees,
And said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, Go again seven times.
And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man’s hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not.
And it came to pass in the meanwhile, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel.
THE ELIJAH STORY
As usual, I have a couple of questions that I need to be answered while we go ahead with this conversation. Why did Elijah go-ahead to pray for rain even when God had personally told him that rain was going to come?
In vs1-2 God specifically instructed Elijah to go show himself to Ahab and He (God) will send rain upon the land. But when Elijah showed himself to Ahab, the Bible recorded that there was a sudden sore famine upon the land. It’s like saying that the current hardship the nation and her people were facing was multiplied by 10.
This was obviously the absence of success, but was it failure? Lets continue to reason along the lines of the scripture.
Elijah went ahead in v41 and told Ahab to throw a party.+
“Open the last bottle of wine, kill the last cattle that you have, throw a feast because rain is coming. I can hear the sound of abundance of rain.” Elijah told Ahab the king, all because the Lord had told him He was going to send rain upon the earth. It keep amazing me on how Elijah could believe God so blindly that he went ahead to make promises and give assurance based on what God told him in his closet.
LET THE PROMISES MANIFEST
This is actually the attitude with which we can make the promises of God upon our lives manifest in their fullness. When God makes a promise, you can take it to the bank because it is sure. I wouldn’t consider this a risk. I don’t think Elijah took a risk, because a risk is something you are not so sure of but you go ahead to attempt it while having back up plans and alternatives. But here, Elijah didn’t have any back up plan neither was there an alternative to what he told the king.
Still this caught my attention; that Elijah went ahead to pray for rain even when God has said
“I will send rain upon the earth if you would show yourself to Ahab.”
Elijah had shown himself to Ahab and there was no rain, don’t you think that Elijah had done his own part by showing himself to Ahab? You and I would have given up at that time, and call it failure because it was very clear that success was absent in this roll call.
THE LESSON OF FAILURE
Again, I say, : Failure is not the absence of failure. We see Elijah boldly displaying this strong character by going ahead to pray. He would have told himself, “I have not exhausted all my divine weapons.” He kept trying; making attempts. The Bible lets us know that he climbed to the top of the mountain and prayed.
Now, this is where the lesson climaxed. He prayed several times till the seventh time. When he became aware of a small cloud as small as a man’s fist. The rain has started. Elijah did not give in to failure neither did he accept failure because he still had attempted to make. Even though success was absent, it was not a failure yet.
If Elijah had stopped trying and didn’t make several attempts and then resigned himself to fate. He would say he’s done his part by appearing before the King. then it would become a failure because he has refused to make a continues attempt.
It is always too soon to quit. There is no right time to quit in life. You can take a break and re-examine the situation and your processes but by all means don’t stop and quit. You are not a failure until you quit. As long as you are alive, always keep trying and you will stand a chance to win.
Get ready for this week because you are going to succeed. You are going to prove God right that His words always come to pass.
Jeremiah 1:12 Then said the LORD unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.
Morning, noon and night, always keep declaring His word and taking necessary actions. It is always too soon to quit and failure is never the absence of success, but failure is the refusal to make attempts.
More of my weekend musings click here