God’s Promise in the Face of Failure

But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever; the purposes of his heart through all generations.” Psalm 33:11,12

Failure so often knocks on the door of our greatest dreams and plans. It seems I’ve been facing some kind of failure since…well, since my college days at Cedarville University. I showed up on this campus with a heart to teach! My greatest joy in high school came from volunteering with Child Evangelism Fellowship as a summer missionary. Entire neighborhoods were my classroom. Oh, how I loved my elementary education major. And, then…came a course called Elementary Math. It seems I can’t do fractions! When I passed the class with a D, my advisor kindly suggested I might do well in a major with fewer numbers. She sent me to the Com Arts department. My first class there was with Dr. Deb Haffey. I delivered my very first ever public speech to her. I was terrified! The five minute informational presentation rolled in at a whopping 22 minutes! Dr. Haffey told the Advanced Public Speaking class right after mine that she’d just heard…and I quote…”the worst speech in her career!” I know because my fiancé, Bob Gresh, was sitting in the front row of that class! Oh, do I know failure! I’m so glad I didn’t let my failure in front of Dr. Haffey color our relationship…or me.

The clearest calling of my life involved a relationship with Dr. Deb Haffey. However, the story didn’t begin until ten years after I graduated from Cedarville. At that point, she was still a strong influence in my life so when I felt the Lord directing me to write my first book, I asked her to read the proposal. After all, who else could I trust to be ruthlessly honest? I did not expect for her to also invite her students to review the proposal. They were also (ahem) honest. After my pride was well under control by my Cedarville book proposal committee, Deb invited me to send her a copy of the fixed proposal which she hand delivered to an office in Chicago at Moody Publishers. Unknown to me, she was close friends to a powerful gatekeeper there. Twelve weeks later, I had a contract. That book was “And the Bride Wore White.” Often under our failures are God’s dreams waiting to be birthed. This was never my dream. My dream was to teach little children math and writing. God’s dream was to teach teenagers to pursue purity and to love Him.

If you feel like your plans are quacking, just remember. The plans of the Lord stand firm forever.

About Author

Dannah Gresh is completely in love with her chocolate labradoodle, Stormie. (But just for the record, she doesn't like dog kisses.) She's been married to Bob for over twenty years and loves that he brings her "freshly sharpened bouquets of pencils." She's the mom to Lexi, Autumn, and Rob. Oh, and she co-wrote Lies Young Women Believe with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth!

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