Does God lead us to failure? Can we count on Him? Even when things look desperate and beyond the grasp of hope? No. God does not lead us to failure. There may be times though when God leads us to (or through) something that is beyond us, which initially, may appear to be God leading us to failure. What does God have in store? Has He failed us?
There is a passage of scripture in 2 Corinthians 1 which illustrates this point. God will call us to things and lead us through things that sometimes, dangle on the point of absolute failure and at first sight, appear to be absolute failure. In 2 Cor 1:8-10 we see the Apostle Paul sharing his turbulent experience in the province of Asia:
“We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.
Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.
He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us..”
We see here that as Paul followed the will of God for his life, he experienced a situation (or situations) that took him to the very point of death itself. They were under great pressure-to the point where all appeared lost. Failure. But he says ‘all this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but God who raises the dead.” God wants us to rely on Him in such a way. And many times the situation will appear dead. It may even die-temporarily. The last part of that scripture is the key…’but God who raises the dead’. He is the God who raises the dead. Even when a situation has ‘died’ it isn’t dead yet-not in God anyways. Our faith, allows us-our situation-to be resurrected and brought through to the other side! Hallelujah! For Christ set the pattern with His death on the cross! All of Hell rejoiced at the death of the Son of God. Oh but the joy that was eventually the Lord’s when He rose on that 3rd day and took back the keys to death, hell and the grave!
Romans 4:17 says
‘God gives life to the dead and calls things that are not, as though they were.’.
God is not the god of the dead but of the living and He will make our situations and callings live as well.
I would say that the only failure in God (if one was to term such a thing), is when we have missed it on our end. When we can’t see past our nose in faith and jump out ahead of God…or fall woefully behind. Or when we fail the tests He has put in front of us. The Lord knows I have failed some of those tests. Did God lead me to failure in doing so? Absolutely not. But He is gracious to give multiple opportunities to pass! We so often derail things for lack of faith, following our own carnal desires, not listening to the Holy Spirit, listening to others instead of God, etc.
Now another part of that is when God will lead us through things and experiences which, in our eyes may seem to be failure, but in God’s eyes, are all part of the larger plan. The story of Joseph in the OT comes quickly to mind. Joseph ended up in a hole, then being sold to into slavery. He was then tossed into prison when even still doing the right thing. But it was all a divine set-up, for God saw the bigger picture and He needed to bring Joseph through those experiences in order for him to be the man God needed him to be, and ultimately save Israel from the famine of the land.
God never fails. He always wins and so do we, if we will keep our eyes on Jesus, not looking to the right or to the left, and faithfully following His every lead, one step at a time.