Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister’s son to Barnabas ...
Remember the story in Acts 12? Setting off on their first missionary journey, Paul and Barnabas take John Mark, Barnabas’ nephew, with them. Then somewhere in the early part of the journey, John Mark freaks out and runs home. At the outset of their second missionary trip, Barnabas says, ‘I’ll get John Mark, and we’ll be on our way.’
‘Hold on,’ Paul says. ‘John Mark flipped out and failed us last time. He’s not coming again.
‘Yes he is,’ said Barnabas, son of Comfort.
‘No way,’ said Paul. ‘There’s work to do. We can’t have this guy tag along with us. He just doesn’t have what it takes.’
‘I’m taking John Mark,’ said Barnabas.
‘Fine,’ said Paul. ‘Go your way. I’ll take Silas and we’ll go in a different direction.’
And they parted company (see Acts 15).
Years later, we see that Barnabas’ work was successful with John Mark, for here in Colossians Paul salutes him.
So too, you who feel like you ‘missed the mark’, that God opened a door for you to do something, but you failed — take heart. I don’t care how badly you messed up, He’s not through with you.
You think you're a failure? Consider this man. He had less than three years of formal education and failed in business in ’31. He was defeated for State Legislature in ’32, and failed again in business in ’34. Finally elected to the State Legislature in ’35, he ran for Speaker and lost in a landslide. He was defeated again for Elector in ’40, and for Congress in ’43. Elected in ’46, he was tossed out of office two years later, defeated in a reelection attempt in ’48. Failing in business once again, he ran for Senate, but was defeated in ’55. He ran for Vice President in ’56, was crushed, and was defeated for Senate another time in ’58. And then in ’60, 1860, Abraham Lincoln won — and went on to become perhaps the greatest political leader in American history.
Could it be that the wit, wisdom, and understanding of human nature which he exhibited so powerfully came as a result of the setbacks, failures, and defeats Lincoln had experienced previously?
Don’t despair, precious people. John Mark blew it badly, but came through ultimately. So can you.
This Daily Devotional is an excerpt from the book "A Days Journey" by Pastor Jon. "A Days Journey" is a collection of 365 short devotions from the New Testament. If you would like your own copy of "A Days Journey" you may click here to go to the SearchLight Store