February 23, 2022

The Formative Power Of Failure


And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.’  And they immediately left the nets and followed Him. Mark 1:17-18, NASB

Success is never final, and failure is never fatal.  Need an example of that today?  Meet John Mark, a man who lived in Jerusalem in the first century, mostly known as just Mark.  We’re introduced to him at a prayer meeting was held in his mother’s home in Jerusalem.  It was at that small group he met a man who was to leave a deep impression on his life named Peter. You can read about all of this in the New Testament book of Acts, chapter 12.

Mark was a young man when he went with the Apostle Paul on the first mission trip ever.  But things didn’t go well; Mark quit and came home. Paul didn’t like this–he didn’t want a quitter on his team, so when it came time for the next mission trip, Paul wouldn’t allow Mark to join him.

After the quitting incident, Mark spent time with Peter.  Remember that Peter was the disciple who denied Jesus three times, so he knew something about the painful sting of failure.  Mark eventually wrote the book which we know as the second Gospel in our Bibles today–the Gospel of Mark.

Was the dispute between Paul and Mark ever healed?  When Paul was prison shortly before his execution, he wrote to Timothy and asked that Mark visit him.  In Mark’s gospel, we see the heart of a man deeply dedicated to Jesus Christ.  He emphasizes the importance of commitment and decisive action, possibly coming from his experience of failure.


Resource reading: Mark 1:1-20