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Tim opened chapter 5 with one of those “failure to fortune stories” let me share that story with you.
Charles B. Darrow set a goal while still in his twenties. He determined he was going to become a millionaire. This isn’t too unusual today, but Charles lived during the Roaring Twenties, a time when a million dollars was an enormous sum. He even married his wife, Esther, promising that they would be millionaires one day. Then tragedy struck, 1929 rolled around; and the Great Depression began. Both Charles and Esther lost their jobs. In fact, they mortgaged their home, lost their car, and used up most of their life savings. Charles was crushed. He sat around the house depressed, until one day he told his wife she could leave him if she wanted to. After all, it was clear they were never going to reach their goal. Esther wasn’t about to leave. She told Charles they were still going to reach their goal, but that they would need to do something every day to keep the dream alive. “Keep it alive?” Charles responded. “It’s dead! We’ve failed.” But Esther didn’t believe this. Instead, she suggested that every night they take some time to discuss what they would do when they reached their goal. They began doing this each night after dinner. Soon Charles came up with the idea of creating play money-something quite appealing, since money was so scarce in those days. He would sit around with lots of time, and now lots of “easy money” to play with, as he and his wife pretended to buy things like houses, property, and other buildings. Soon they turned it into a full-fledged game, with a board, dice, cards, little house and hotels…and you guessed it: that was the beginning of a game you probably have in your closet right now. This is how the game Monopoly was born…The game was copyrighted in 1935, and Parker Brothers bought if from Charles Darrow. And do you know how much money they gave for it? That’s right (with royalty rights) he received over one million dollars” (Pages 54, 55).
It’s amazing how failure can be such an amazing and insightful teacher for success in life. Jonah discovered this in the belly of the great fish!
Elmore states, “Failure can be an insightful teacher. It can teach us how to proper in adversity and make us resilient when we encounter defeat and trials. It can develop emotional muscles that would never grow if we only succeeded. It teaches lessons we’d never learn if we had always had it easy. These are lessons we all should learn, as certainly every one of us has failed and will fail again” (55, 56).
The truth is Jonah’s story shows us that failure does not have to destroy our life. We can learn through the process of failure like Jonah did. His point of failure with God and his position in the belly of the whale caused him to surrender his life and will 100% to God. The truth is Jonah’s act of surrender in the belly of whale was his salvation. His willingness to pray a pivotal prayer of repentance to God was the one act that stopped the downward spiral of disobedience and failure. The truth is his act of surrender was the action that actually saved him and set in motion a revival in his heart and in Nineveh!
I like what Elmore says. “In his classic book, Prayer, Ole Hallesby sums it up this way, ‘Prayer and
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