Yesterday I assigned my beginning Spanish students to make vocabulary flashcards. They kept asking me, What does this mean? What does this mean? I soon discovered the vocabulary list had no English definitions, only the Spanish words. I had given them an impossible task.
Today I shall help these poor students, by providing definitions for them.
So many times we get right in the thick of something and realize it is not working –that we have made a mistake. Usually it’s more serious than messing up a Spanish lesson, though. Usually it’s messing up a job or a relationship or a checkbook.
It’s hard not to come home and berate one’s self for mistakes, but I’ve been telling myself, Just fix it and try again the next day.
God gives us permission to do this in the important places in our lives, too –the broken marriages, the wounded parent-child relationships, the financial holes we dig ourselves into.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning.” (Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV)
God does not berate. He is compassionate and offers the opportunity for us to regroup every time our feet hit the floor at the beginning of a new day.
Webster’s definition of “regroup”: To reorganize for a fresh attempt.
Our first response to failure is to lie down and die, to make no further attempt, to call it quits. We show no compassion to ourselves. We are consumed with regret.
But the Lord’s great love says, If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.
See the word “fail” in Lamentations 3:22? That’s not referring to us.
It is the Lord’s compassion we can lean on and never find it lacking.
I’m sure you’ve messed something up. Apologize to whomever. Come up with a new approach. Ask God’s help to handle the situation differently today.