Daily Devotion – Hope For Parents When Our Children Fail

Finding Hope in Failure

But now this is what the Lord says: “Do not weep any longer, for I will reward you,” says the Lord. “Your children will come back to you from the distant land of the enemy. There is hope for your future,” says the Lord. “Your children will come again to their own land." Jeremiah 31:16-17 (NLT)

Hope Discovery of the Day:

Failure is not the end – it is only a detour in the path of life.

We’ve all been there. That moment when your kid does something that grieves your heart. And it gets worse in the day of social media . . . their actions might reverberate across the internet. But there is hope for parents when our children fail.

Measuring the failure

We tend to want to avoid failure, right? Who wants to aim to fail? Yet sometimes we can go through seasons in this life where we just keep failing and our outlook can grow dismal. But sometimes we also might be calling something a failure that isn’t.

So it is with our children. They will have their moments of victory and the lesser celebrated moments, too. And sometimes we might classify something as a failure that could be a turning point in the life of our children.

It can feel like a failure when we don’t fully succeed in an endeavor, but was there some gain, after all? When our great God uses everything for our good and His glory, then perhaps even some good can come from our failure. When failure turns our heart back to God, it might actually be deemed as a success.

When failure turns our heart back to God, it might actually be deemed as a success.

Accepting the Failure

Still, there are those heartbreaking moments when our children hurt . . . badly. They may have made a mistake in their relationship choice or failed a class. They might be struggling to even survive in this world. Trying to deny failure will not bring healing.

Trying to deny failure will not bring healing.

Accepting the cold hard facts – not condoning or enabling them – helps us to move from failure to success. Processing failure as reality, rather than trying to make excuses helps us to gain the victory when life is hard.

Processing failure as reality, rather than trying to make excuses helps us to gain the victory when life is hard.

With God, we can take a debilitating moment of pain and walk through it with our children. Pain avoidance is not the path to victory. Walking through hard moments is what gives us the strength for the next hurdle that we face.

Pain avoidance is not the path to victory.

Understanding the Failure

Sometimes we would rather bury failure and never speak of it again. But this only keeps us bound in shame. When we seek to understand what led to our failure, we can overcome it the next time. God’s Word illumines our understanding when the reality of failure hits hard. He promises to make sense of it all if we will be honest and seek Him for understanding. Sugar coating things does not make life easier.

Sugar coating things does not make life easier.

Purpose in Failure

Consequences in this fallen world make failure especially painful and sometimes long-lasting. Our children have free will just like we do. We cannot put them in a bubble, but we can equip them to keep pressing on in the faith when failure threatens to steal their joy. When faithfulness is our goal more than success, we can learn to embrace both failure and success as part of the sanctification process. This I know – our God is sovereign in all of it. What looked like a failure to God’s people during the life of Jeremiah was a segue to hope. Failure is not the end – it is only a detour in the path of life.

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