Failures of the Past–My Springboard for the Future

My sweet Brooks
(Photo taken by my talented friend, Evan )

“At the end of the year we turn with eagerness to all that God has for the future, and yet anxiety is apt to arise from remembering the yesterdays. Our present enjoyment of God’s grace is apt to be checked by the memory of yesterday’s sins and blunders. But God is the God of our yesterdays, and He allows the memory of them in order to turn the past into a ministry of spiritual culture for the future. God reminds us of the past lest we get into a shallow security in the present.” -Oswald Chambers

Don’t we all inhale the newness of the approaching year, saying “this year will be different, better–I will be different, better.” We write lists, make charts, set goals–all of which we should. And then the sneaking memory of our failures from the year before creeps in and tells us “don’t bother”.

We strive–and there is place for striving–but mostly we forget “The Lord will go before you.” We strive and fail, so we make more charts, try harder and finally give up…UNLESS, at the end of our striving we realize “His grace is sufficient for me; for when I am weak, then He is strong“.

Do I ever just leave the room, go to a quiet place, fall on my knees and strive there? What would life be like if I made a habit of this striving?

“He is close to the broken and contrite.”


I am the manager of my home, and as such, there are lists to make, things to improve–practical areas to govern.

But as the year begins, I will purpose to wrap these duties in humble prayer and petition to the Father. “If God is for us, who can be against us?”

And then, like the demonstration of placing larger rocks in the jar first so the smaller ones fit around it, I will prioritize the day, and put the big stuff in first. The stuff of eternal weight, no matter what others say is the most important.

I am prone to think that motherhood is a lot of crying out to God to bear me up, and a lot of smiling, talking and learning to enjoy my children as I try to show them glimpses of a Savior. Can I do those things? Won’t everything else fit in around that?

Devotions, Advice & Renewal for When Motherhood Feels Too Hard

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7 Responses to “Failures of the Past–My Springboard for the Future”

  1. Michelle (She Looketh Well) says:

    Oh Kelly, I love this post. I am one who LOVES the new year. Actually I love new months, new weeks ect., especially if I get to start a new journal on one of those days;)

    I have even been writing less in my journal so it will be done right on New Year’s Eve. Insane, I know:)

    But, as much as I love to plan, and chart, and make lists I can get so discouraged when it seems that nothing changes. My husband is the opposite of me and refuses to be discouraged by the past. Then in my mind, I accuse him of avoiding the truth, burying his head, denial ect. (We really do balance each other out.) But, he seems to be doing the “forgetting what lies behind and press forward” thing.

    He is so wise, me, foolish woman for sure;)

    I know God’s grace is sufficient and one thing that has been loud and clear from the Lord this whole year is that He is even in control of and directing the things I think of as yuck, my weaknesses and the like. These very things He allows and uses to mold and make me more into the image of Jesus.

    Can I trust Him with these things as well as the seemingly good?

    When will I realize that ALL things work together for my good and His glory?

    My list: SWEETNESS to my littles

    GENTLENESS

    TENDERNESS

    TIME with them.

    Sounds like a little abiding will produce the fruit I am so desperate to bear.

    Thanks Kelly, once again you are a blessing and encouragement to me.

    Clinging to His Faithfulness,
    Michelle
    shelookethwell.blogspot.com

  2. Kim M. says:

    You are so right about this. I have so many failures myself!

    Brooks is a little doll! 🙂

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