MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Coming up next, a preview of Listening In. This week, host Warren Smith talks to Michael Lindsay, president of Gordon College. That’s a private Christian school in Massachusetts.
Mentoring Christians through the years, Lindsay has discovered some guiding principles when it comes to making life-changing decisions.
WARREN SMITH: You say that failure is the wake up call to transition. Say more about that idea.
MICHAEL LINDSAY: Oftentimes we experience failure in our life. And if we don’t pause to see what really happened, we missed the great lessons that God wants to teach us both personally about our character, about how we relate to other people, about how we get things done, but also thinking sort of comprehensively about our life. Failure can become the crucible of great transformation and change.
I find looking at scripture, most of the time, it is in defeat, disappointment, loss and grief, that the Lord speaks most dramatically to his people. And it is in those contexts, that He does the most. Transformation of who we are, our value, our values, our character, the way we live out our life. Now, it’s not to say that the Lord brings all that into our life, because we can’t learn character, we can’t develop virtue in the good times. But the human condition is much more open to that kind of transformational work of the Lord in those moments of great loss.
And so what I try to encourage my students to think about, and I’d say, I try to think about it in my own life, is how we can use disappointment and loss. And those moments when we fail in achieving our hopes or dreams, how we can really learn from that? If you can fail early and often, it dramatically increases the possibilities of your upward growth and trajectory. And I think all of us want to get better, stronger, want to be more effective in what the Lord has called us to do, but you actually have to learn that through some of the disappointments and setbacks that are just part of learning and growing up.
BASHAM: That’s Michael Lindsay talking to Warren Smith. To hear their complete conversation, look for Listening In wherever you get your podcasts.