failing forward

Posted: August 11, 2008 in Christianity
Tags: , , , , ,

I’m not sure if I heard someone first use the phrase or if it just came to me one day. But the idea of “failing forward” has become an important part of how I view my walk with Christ.  This is a balanced approach instead of doing what many Christians do – tend towards extremes.

Some see their love walk with God as a mission, a goal to be attained and an end to be reached. Did my daily bible reading – check. Prayed for at least 15 minutes – check. Didn’t cuss, drink, smoke or have gay sex – check. Now whats on TV? The problem with task-oriented Christianity is that Christianity, by nature, is not a task. Its a relationship. Spouses who treat their significant others as items on a to do list have marriage problems. Similarly, Christians who treat their walk with God as a daily objective won’t ever get as close to Him as their hearts desire. Its not whats He’s asking for and they’ll never be happy because they’ll always fall short of the self-imposed chores they’ve created.

Which brings us to our next extreme: the spiritually lazy. These folks have realized that they will never be able to keep the list of rules needed to be a “good christian” so they quit. I’ve heard this sometimes referred to as “greasy grace” where someone just does what they want and just assumes the “grace” of God will cover it. Of course what they really are counting on is mercy, not grace, but its an unbiblical mercy. They have learned to not be task oriented but instead they are content with no spiritual growth.

Instead of these two extremes, I believe God is calling us to live a life “failing forward.” With this mentality, the Christian understands that he can never please God with his check list and he will make mistakes. However, instead of wallowing in his shortcomings, he chooses to embrace the love relationship Jesus provided (thru scriptural grace) and continues moving forward through his shortcomings.

Failing forward. Kinda catchy, huh?

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Comments
  1. tracey says:

    Like it!

  2. […] really capture what I feel is the essence of pure, raw Christianity. I previously posted about one here.  The phrase I want to talk about in this post is “it’s OK to not be OK, but […]

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