Recalling Times of Failure as a Safeguard for the Future

I felt actual tears come to my eyes this week when I heard that Chuck Colson had died.

I was surprised at my own reaction.

I started thinking about how much his written work had influenced and affected me over the years. Partly because his life story is so dramatic…partly because he was such a brilliant communicator.

I admit that I’ve always been drawn to intelligence.

When people ask me what I would want if I could have anything?

I’d ask to be “gifted” in the academic sense of the word. I’ve always wondered what it would be like to have a photographic memory, to understand complex principles and retain them, and to just “get it” and “remember it” without a lot of effort.

I’ll pass on the money, power, and fame…..but give me a gifted mind and I’m good to go.

Which is why I’m so drawn to Chuck Colson.

Here is a man who as Nixon’s right hand man…had money, power, and fame…but it was his downfall.

Once his life was destroyed by the pursuit of those very same three…he found a new way, a better way to live.

Regardless of where we stand on the faith spectrum, you have to admire Colson’s life and his choices.

He knew himself well…so he guarded himself from the lure of money, power, and fame for the remainder of his days.

As I listened to various commentators expound upon Colson’s life…every single one of them had the greatest respect and admiration for the man.

His legacy won’t be forgotten.

Nor will his warning.

Colson was quoted as saying, each of us needs to know our hearts (and our weaknesses) so well that we safeguard ourselves from repeating past mistakes. Do whatever it takes…Colson admonished…to steer clear of those troublesome inner-insatiable desires for “….insert yours here…” whatever you combat.

Learn from your past failures as a safeguard for the future…simply stated from a man who lived what he spoke.


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