But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers. (Luke 22:32)
I watched my friend Amanda (name changed) where she stood at the front of the classroom and spoke to the room full of kids. She told them about Jesus—about his goodness and love and how he wants us to love each other. An outsider looking in would see a regular Sunday school class taught by a kind, young woman with long, black hair.
What they wouldn’t see is how a few months ago she was alone in a room cutting into her own skin with a pocketknife. A few months ago, she was a bully that no one dared mess with. She could beat up even the toughest guys at her school. She was in pain and inflicting pain on others. But through God’s grace, now she was teaching others about the love of God.
When she had gone from feeling unlovable and unloving to being redeemed by God’s grace, she had a choice—to stay sidelined by her failures or to walk in freedom and power. She could choose to return from failure in caution and timidity or to use the change that God had brought about in her life to teach and inspire others.
Like Amanda, after failure, we have a choice. Do we let our failures tell us who we are, or do we humbly embrace redemption and use our voice to strengthen others?
Embrace the fullness of freedom from failure and strengthen others.
Grace Aukerman is a third-year Kingswood University student from Albania who loves coffee and her dog.
© 2022 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.