Failing our Way to Success
The madness of Mr. Trump prevents him from realizing how much he has won. Because of his madness, he cannot entertain the idea of losing. After all, in his world of reality, he is perfect. He can never understand that there are some priceless lessons that we gain by losing, or failing, that we can never learn otherwise. These lessons enabled us to become better and achieve more.
Every great achiever that I know and or read about somewhere along the way failed or lost. Michael Jordan, some say the greatest basketball player ever, was cut from his high school basketball team. I think it was Robert F. Kennedy who said, “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.”
I have a sermon that I preached entitled Failing our Way to Success. The theme of the sermon is in order to succeed we must fail, but by failing in the long run we succeed. For, again, the lessons we learn make us better persons and greater achievers.
I must confess if you have not already perceived, this subject, failing has the potential to lead to greater success, losing has the potential to make us greater winners and to be knocked down, and getting up has great potential to make us better. A setback can accelerate our move forward. There is a Bible verse that I like it says, God is able to make up for years that the locust has eaten. God can restore unto us the years that we have failed so that we lose nothing but gain tremendously.
As I reflected on Mr. Trump’s loss and how difficult it must be I remembered the 2016 campaign and Mrs. Hillary Clinton’s loss to Donald Trump. There were two profoundly moving reactions of Mrs. Clinton and my daughter the Reverend Leah Daughtry and my response to Leah’s depression.
My daughter, Rev. Leah Daughtry was the CEO of the 2008 and 2016 Democratic National Conventions which propelled President Barack Obama into office. It was called one of the greatest Democratic Conventions ever held.
Then, Mrs. Clinton and the democratic leadership asked Leah to do it again in 2016. She made history. She became the only person to be the CEO twice.
She was so successful that Mrs. Clinton called her the miracle worker.
I wrote a book about her called To my Daughter, Reverend Leah Daughtry CEO, 2008 and 2016 of the Democratic National Convention History Maker! Miracle Worker
We watched the election returns that night at the Jacob Javits Center. After
Mrs. Clinton’s loss we were devastated. It was 2 a.m. when we left behind the thousands of stunned and transfixed followers of Mrs. Clinton. Staggering along, dodging vehicles parked and speeding, and stepping over debris, it all seemed so surreal as we pondered, sometimes verbally, and sometimes, silently, what just happened at the center. Our friend, leader, and “President” had just been defeated. We just saw it all and heard it on television.
It is significant and instructive to compare Mrs. Clinton’s reaction to her loss, and Mr. Trump’s.
In her concession speech, Mrs. Clinton showed great grace, forgiveness, and bigness of heart towards a person who was anything but gracious and kind to her. As always, her thoughts turned outward: how disappointing and hurt her family and supporters must have felt? All of us should continue working to make the country better. Her concession speech said it all. It should be held up as a challenge to all who have been and will be broken-hearted in defeat, especially by someone with questionable, suspicious baggage.
Again, it’s a model and challenge for all of us to emulate. I do believe that Mrs. Clinton will go on making her contribution for the good of all, whether that’s bigger or more important than the calling of the job as President of the United States, God knows.
Here is Mrs. Clinton’s concession speech:
“Last night, I congratulated Donald Trump and offered to work with him on behalf of our country. Our campaign was never about one person or even one election, it was about the country we love and about building an America that is hopeful, inclusive, and big-hearted.
We have seen that our nation is more deeply divided than we thought. But I still believe in America and I always will. And if you do, then we must accept this result and look to the future. Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.
Our constitutional democracy enshrines the peaceful transfer of power and we don’t just respect that, we cherish it. It also enshrines other things; the rule of law, the principle that we are all equal in rights and dignity, and freedom of worship and expression. We respect and cherish these values too and we must defend them.
Let me add, that our constitutional democracy demands our participation, not just every four years but all the time. So let’s do all we can to keep advancing the causes and values we all hold dear; making our economy work for everyone not just those at the top, protecting our country and protecting our planet, and breaking down all the barriers that hold any American back from achieving their dreams.
We spent a year and a half bringing together millions of people from every corner of our country to say with one voice that we believe that the American dream is big enough for everyone. For people of all races and religions, for men and women, for immigrants, for LGBT people, and for people with disabilities, for everyone.
To Barack and Michelle Obama, our country owes you an enormous debt of gratitude. We thank you for your graceful, determined leadership that has meant so much to so many Americans and people across the world. And to Bill and Chelsea, Mark, Charlotte, Aidan our brothers, and our entire family my love for you means more than I can ever express.
You crisscrossed this country even four-month-old Aidan who traveled with his mom. I will always be grateful to the talented, dedicated men and women at our headquarters in Brooklyn and across our country.
You poured your hearts into this campaign. For some of you who are veterans, it was a campaign after you had done other campaigns. For some of you, it was your first campaign. I want each of you to know that you were the best campaign anybody could have ever expected or wanted.
I want everybody coming out from behind that and making sure your voices are heard going forward. To everyone who sent in contributions as small as $5 and kept us going, thank you. Thank you from all of us. And to the young people, in particular, I hope you will hear this. I have, as Tim said, spent my entire adult life fighting for what I believe in.
I’ve had successes and setbacks and sometimes painful ones. Many of you are at the beginning of your professional public and political careers, you will have successes and setbacks too. This loss hurts, but please never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it. It is worth it. And so we need you to keep up these fights now and for the rest of your lives. And to all the women, and especially the young women who put their faith in this campaign and in me, I want you to know that nothing has made me prouder than to be your champion.
Finally, I am so grateful for our country and for all that it has given to me. I count my blessings every single day that I am an American. And I still believe as deeply as I ever have that if we stand together and work together with respect for our differences, strengthen in our convictions and love for this nation our best days are still ahead of us.
Because, you know, I believe we are stronger together and we will go forward together. And you should never ever regret fighting for that. You know, Scripture tells us, “Let us not grow weary in doing good for in due season we shall reap.” To my friends, let us have faith in each other, let us not grow weary and not lose heart, for there are more seasons to come and there is more work to do. I am incredibly honored and grateful to have had this chance to represent all of you in this consequential election. May God bless you and may God bless the United States of America. ”
Beautiful! Gracious! Magnanimous!
Mr. Trump and all you followers of Mr. Trump are you listening or have you heard? If so, go and do likewise.
To be continued....