When People Fail…

Sep 29, 2012 | Faith

 There’ll be something I will do or say that will fail you. 

But God will never fail you.

I shared this with an-acquaintance-turned-friend-who-was-a- beginning -Christian.  Many people failed her in her life.  I knew my own limitations. If her idea of God was dependent upon how I met her needs, I could disappoint her.  I had put someone up on a pedestal once.  Someone I looked to for affirmation, advice, and as a reflection of God.  When the pedestal tumbled, I was devastated.

Someone failed me. But God didn’t.

I remembered this principle when reading Exodus 22, a dry passage on laws created for property protection and social responsibility. God established the laws knowing people living in relationship would fail each other.  However,  embedded throughout the verses, is the character of God.

Honesty.  Compassion.  Fairness.  Justice.  

Forgiveness.  Grace.  Restitution.

I have two fairly large scars from relationship failures. I’ve probably inflicted a few scars on others, too.  My family can testify.

What we do when people fail us?

I know, forgive.  

But how do you do that?  What about when the person doesn’t know they’ve hurt you?   When they don’t acknowledge the wrong?  When they blame you?  When there’s just silence?

It’s not always simple.

The passage in Exodus makes me thankful for every part of scripture.  God doesn’t miss a beat.  He provides boundaries for justice knowing humans will fail each other.

We’ll fail each other, but God won’t.

When I lean into the character of God,  I’m able to trust Him in light of other’s failures.   He’s shown compassion. He’s enabled forgiveness and grace when I didn’t think I could.

When I’ve given Him the puss of my wounds, He begins the healing process.

So, how do we to make relationships with others full of honesty,  compassion, fairness,  justice,  forgiveness, grace and restitution?   

I will fail someone.  You will fail someone.

On our own efforts, we can’t do it .  We can be a poor reflection of God even with our best efforts.

In His Spirit, we can.

It’s why I keep coming back to His word.  It’s where His truth and character resides.  It’s where hope of His character invades my spirit, allowing me to understand grace.

People around me will fail.

But God and His Word will not.

Understanding this allows me to extend grace.

It allows me to say with certainty

God’s image is not dependent upon our failures.

because God never fails.

My flesh and heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.  Psalm 73:26


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  1. Janette Wright

    Amen, amen, amen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. crownofglory

    Hi Brenda, I just wrote a long comment, but now I don’t see it. Hope it got through. Just rediscovered you here… glad to be reconnected.


    • brendayoderBrenda

      Thank you so much Lidia, because I consider you my mentor in ministry and in blogging. Yours was the second voice that started reading three years ago. Your love and passion for God is an honest faith walk I respect and honor. Thank you for taking the time to find me. I think this space will be here for a while!

  3. crownofglory

    Dearest friend,
    I had been wondering what had happened to you. On my blog sidebar I kept glancing at your blog title. No new post. Just the old title, “New Location.” Hmmm, I had checked that one out months before, but failed to do one thing: to put in the new URL to your “new location.” I just kept thinking, “She’s probably very busy these days.” Suddenly this early morning, I realized my mistake. So I clicked the old link, went to your old blog, and clicked on the new location of your new entries. I was delighted to find you again, dear friend. Scrolled down to see all those posts I had missed. But not to worry, I’ll find time to read them all. Yours is one blog I want to keep on reading. Because you always make a lot of sense to me. See you around, Brenda. And this time, I’ll make sure I change the URL to your link on my sidebar.


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