Failure Under Pressure

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Proverbs 29:10 — If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.

Intrinsically, we know this to be true, which is why, when we fail, we are upset with ourselves. And yet we are told, by people or even Christian books, that we really failed for other reasons; the pressure was too great (which would be true on some occasions); the directions weren’t clear at the beginning; our boss (or whoever) is a jerk!; it’s not you – it’s (fill in the blank) – really, you’re fabulous!

But some of the most successful people, by the world’s standards at the very least, are people who failed, sometimes over and over, before they succeeded. Failure is a part of growth, and without growth, you can’t ever truly succeed at anything!

It’s when we hold on to our failures, punishing ourselves, like I tend to do, that we get into trouble. I’m not talking about constantly failing under pressure – if that’s the case, then we are expecting too much of ourselves and we aren’t up to the task. I’m talking about the random failures that are part of life.

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So what do we do when our strength is too small? Do we give up and never try it again? No! Does this apply to everything? No! It depends on how critical it is to your life.

For example – if you are fearful of something such as jumping out of an airplane, so what? If you have a flaw that is causing trouble in your life, however, that is something you have to conquer. Even if you fail at exorcising it, over and over, you have to keep on keeping on, as my Mama would say.


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