3 Reasons Success and Failure Work Together

“Success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little further down the road.”

– Jack Hyles

Failure Leads to Success

I can’t count all the inventors who, if they had given up, would have never invented the airplane, the lightbulb, the television, and any other number of things. If we see failure as not being final, we’ll persevere and keep moving forward. One lady who was swimming across the English Channel finally gave up, but when she got in the boat, she could see through the fog that she was less than a mile away. If she’d known that, she’d never given up. The point is, success may come just after the time when you feel like giving up or you do give up. The inventors tried this. It didn’t work and it didn’t work, so they tried something else and, finally, success, but only because they didn’t give up.

Success Can Lead to Failure

I can also count numbers of people who, when they made it big, started to fall. Their successes went to their heads, and they started to overestimate themselves. One pastor had several people tell him that his sermons were among the best they’ve heard. He then asked his wife, “How many great preachers do you think there are in the world?” She wisely answered, “One less than you think.” Ouch! Pride comes, and then comes a fall. And the higher someone is, the harder they’ll fall. There is a real risk for those who are successful to start believing their own stuff–thereby, their success can lead to failure. It can happen to me, and it can happen to you.

Success Is in the Finish

In trying to inspire perhaps his favorite church, Paul wrote to the Philippians, “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14). The point is, never trip over anything that’s behind you. God forgives (1 John 1:9), and we move on. We don’t drive backwards using our rearview mirror because if we’re putting too much attention in looking backwards, we’re at risk for stumbling over something that’s in front of us. Does that make sense, my friends?


Mr. Hyles’ comment “Success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little further down the road” is true because failure can lead to success, so don’t give up. But success can also lead to failure, so keep looking ahead to the finish line. If you can’t see it, imagine it! Remember that “God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do” (Hebrews 6:10).