Thursday, April 18, 2024

AWRIGHT DEN: Success in failure


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ABOUT FIVE YEARS AGO, a friend who stimulates you to think and who blows you away by his perception and wisdom, said to me: ‘Corey, because God told you to start a business doesn’t mean it would be financially successful’. That man was Andrew Murrell.

A few Sundays ago, my pastor, David Coulthrust, another man who stimulates you to think, said from the pulpit, and I am paraphrasing ‘Your current job may be your charity to the world and not what God has for you as a career to gain income. You must know how to recognise when God has shifted and wants you to move on to the next thing and at the right time, He may return you back to that business’. Andrew’s words changed my life back then and David’s reminded me of how easy we can ‘miss it’.

Every business God has directed you to start is to be successful, but here is the problem: we often and only see success in business as the accumulation of revenue and profit resulting in financial growth, which is the world’s perspective. I believe God sees success as the accumulation of knowledge, wisdom and experience resulting in growth in character and relationship, and understanding of Him and yourself, while fulfilling purpose and finishing the course. This is a kingdom perspective.


We all start businesses with the intention for them to do well and succeed. Actually, I don’t know anyone who started a business believing it would ‘fail’. Each person was created with a purpose and if a business is born out of him or her, it too, will have a purpose. To believe that purpose is only financial is to limit God and to rob yourself of true wealth.

So often we get stuck in the moment and so caught up in the trappings and lusts of this world, that we become blinded to the purpose and timing of what God has given us. For that business you have that may not be doing well or about to close or have closed, God may have wanted you to gain discipline, organisational skills, leadership abilities, a network, patience, the ability to communicate, and the list goes on. If you fulfilled the purpose God had in store for you in that business, my friend, you have been successful.

Here is the beautiful thing about all of this. The growth in character, wisdom, experience, relationship and understanding of Him and yourself you gained in that business, are profits God often allows you to invest in another business or two that He desires of you to be financially successful in.

You would be surprised to know how many ‘failed businesses’ that ‘successful’ business people went through before they ended up where they are. Many of them would testify that the experiences and lessons learnt from past businesses were the investments needed to grow and sustain their current businesses. I was watching a reality TV show similar to Shark Tank and one of the investors said that they weren’t investing their money in any business or person who hasn’t failed. It may seem strange but growth, development and innovation are often birthed out of failure.

I used business for this example but this can also be applied to other areas of your life that you feel you failed at or didn’t turn out as you had hoped. It could have been a job, a relationship, friendship, a course you took, an event you started or a country you migrated to.

I want to encourage you not to give up because it didn’t work out the first time. It may take some time to get back on your feet, dust off yourself and go again, but just don’t stay down. It can be very challenging to see the good in the bad experiences but I am learning each day that God’s ways are definitely not our ways, but what makes the journey a lot easier is knowing you are walking in the will of God for your life.

Corey Worrell, a former Commonwealth youth ambassador, is director of C2J Foundation Inc., a project-based NGO focusing on social development. Email:


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