A recent issue of the Friday Evenings newsletter notes someone once said, “Falling down doesn’t make you a failure, but failing to get up does.” Thomas Edison was a man who saw many of his experiments fail, but he continued doing them anyway. He knew that it was better to get up than to give up. He was committed to excellence. In his search for a filament for incandescent light bulbs, he experimented with hundreds of fibers and metals. In 1879, he discovered a method for making an inexpensive filament that would handle the stress of electric current. Today we call his discovery carbonized cotton fiber—thread! However, the filament was so fragile that it easily broke in an open-air environment. Almost by accident, he tried inserting the filament within an oxygen-free tube. To his surprise, the filament glowed! It didn’t burn long, but it burned. Eventually he and his helpers discovered the secret was in creating a vacuum within the glass bulb—and using a tungsten filament.

“In the life of the Christian, we face many trips, tumbles, errors and failures. The voice that visits us in those moments is not the voice of the Father, but of the adversary. He doesn’t say, ‘Nice try.’ He shouts, ‘Failure!’ He asserts, ‘You can’t live this Christian life,’ or, ‘You were better off before you started on this ill-fated journey,’ or, ‘Stay down. You won’t be missed,’ or ‘You deserve better than this.’

“It’s the Other Voice you want to hear. That Voice says, ‘Let Me help you with that. I have been there before, and I know you can make it. My strength is sufficient for you. I never will leave you or forsake you. Together we can become strong. Take My hand.’

“God wants to honor us for our achievements, not punish us for our falls. He is committed to being our Companion, Counselor, Advisor, Helper and Friend.”

(To subscribe to Friday Evenings, email Tom Barnard.)

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