by Vonda Skelton @VondaSkelton
Okay, I admit it. I’ve failed. Many times. But the good news is, God can take my messes and use them for His glory . . . if I let Him.
It all depends on what I do with my failures.
As writers and speakers, we can either work really hard to hide our frailties and present the illusion of perfection, or we can admit our struggles and present the answer to our need. Yes, our success as sharers of the Gospel can depend on what we do with our failures.
I’m so blessed as a writer and speaker. I know that. God has given me more opportunities to speak and write than I ever imagined. And I know I don’t deserve it. But if I could be so bold, I hope you’ll hear from my heart when I say that I fully believe He has blessed my ministry because of my willingness to admit my failures, while also pointing to the answer for them.
My first huge failure was in my marriage. And the first time God called me to speak was when He took me kicking and screaming into giving my testimony about that journey. Oh, I didn’t want to do it! I didn’t want the women of my church to know how I had treated Gary before they knew me. They saw me as a Godly Christian woman who loved the Lord with all her heart, and I wanted it to stay that way.
But God wouldn’t leave me alone, and I finally obeyed His call…and I came home from that event knowing what I had been created for!
Then He showed me how I had failed in His call to holiness, that I had adopted the world’s standards as my own, rather than follow His command to be like Christ. That message was soon shared with the women of my church, too…along with the prescription to use Philippians 4:8 as a filter verse for everything I allowed into my heart and mind, and out of my mouth.
He took me to my struggles with pride, raising children, and taming my tongue. And every one of those topics became topics for me to speak and write about.
And the process isn’t limited to non-fiction. Many of my own areas of sin have ended up in my novels and my current work-in-progress: lying, manipulation, anger, and unforgiveness.
So, do you want to have more opportunities to write and/or speak for Him? Admit your failures. After all, we’re in good company. Consider what Paul said in Romans 7 (and I paraphrase here), “Oh, I don’t know why I do the things I do! I don’t do what I know I should do, and I do what I know I shouldn’t do! I want to do right, but I keep doing wrong! Oh, what a wretched man I am!” If Paul could voice his struggle, don’t you think we should, too?
Perhaps He’s calling you to admit your failures…and then point to the only answer for them.
It could be God’s ticket for your ministry.
What about you? Can you find success—however large or small—through your failures?
Don't forget to join the conversation,
Failure - it really is a first step to a #writing & #speaking ministry - via @VondaSkelton on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)
Failure is hard - but it could be your first step to a #writing & speaking ministry - via @VondaSkelton (Click to Tweet)
Vonda Skelton is a speaker and the author of four books: Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe and the 3-book Bitsy Burroughs mysteries for children 8-12 yo. She’s the founder and co-director of Christian Communicators Conference, offering speakers’ training and community for Christian women called to ministry. Vonda is a frequent instructor at writer’s conferences and keynotes at business, women’s, and associational events. You can find out more about Vonda, as well as writing opportunities and instruction at her writer’s blog, The Christian Writer’s Den at VondaSkelton.com.