On Failure and Beauty
By: Tom Grosh IV, DMin
January 8, 2020
by Thomas B. Grosh, IV
“One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4, ESV).
On failure and beauty, Justin Whitney Earley’s epilogue to The Common Rule: Creating Habits of Purpose for an Age of Distraction provides timely insights for beginning a new year.
“Life is not about our failures or successes. It is not about what we have done—it is about what God has done.” — Justin Whitmel Earley, author of The Common Rule: Creating Habits of Purpose for an Age of Distraction
- What did the Lord “do” in and through you in 2019?
- What habits (individually and as part of the people of God) keep your gaze upon the beauty of the Lord?
- What new daily and/or weekly habits do you desire to weave into your life to sharpen your focus upon the Lord as the year unfolds? Note: Suggestions from this series include:
- What temptations and/or sins distract you from living for (or dwelling with) the Lord?
- How has the Lord called you back to him or closer to him through failure in 2019?
Please join me in taking a few minutes first to thank the Lord for His work in 2019 and then to offer 2020 to the Lord. Remind yourself that you are entrusting the new year to the Lord not only in word, but also with head, heart, hands and habits. If you have not already done such, I encourage you to find an individual and/or a small group to hold you accountable in seeking after the ways of the Lord in an age of distraction. If there is sin separating you from the Lord and/or members of the body of Christ as you begin the new year, take time to confess the sin and engage in reconciliation. If you find reconciliation difficult, seek counsel from a trusted ministry leader.
Forgive us for how easily we turn away from your beauty to “me.” Transform our lives in 2020 that we may grow more and more in the likeness of the self-sacrificing Christ child. Equip us with your armor — the belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, shoes of readiness given by the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. We acknowledge that it is by your strength alone that we stand against the schemes of the devil, extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one, and grow in Christ-likeness in an age of distraction. Toward that end, keep us alert with all perseverance, remind us to regularly pray for and encourage one-another, focus us upon you as we share the gospel in word and deed, and continually draw us closer to you. Infuse in us a longing to gaze upon your beauty, not losing sight that 2020’s all about you.