If we quantify our failures — whether personal or professional — we notice that these significantly outnumber our successes (I would say about 80 percent failures and 20 percent successes). However, the impact of these failures is minimal compared to the impact of our few successes.
For example, a few years ago I applied to three graduate programs, but I was only offered one. While I didn’t get into two of the programs, the time I spent in the graduate program that accepted me transformed my life in very positive ways. When I was job hunting a couple of years ago, I applied to over 40 jobs and was only offered one. However, the skills I developed and the relationships I built in that one job have been invaluable in my career.
I think it all comes down to trust. The Bible says, “In his heart a man plans his course, but God determines his steps” (Proverbs 16:9). If in our course we stumble and fail, we shouldn’t let this discourage us. Instead we must trust that in the end it will all work out. After all, it is our few victories that lead to positive and significant change in our lives.