A Mistake is Simply a Lesson … If You Don’t Quit!

A Mistake is Simply a Lesson … If You Don’t Quit!
By Katie Souza
Taken from Katie Souza’s Journals while incarcerated on 2001

“In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (in Greek her name is Dorcas); she was always doing good and helping the poor. About that time she became sick and died, and her body was washed and placed in an upstairs room.  (Peter said), ‘…Tabitha, get up.’ She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. He took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called for the believers, especially the widows, and presented her to them alive. This became known all over Joppa, and many people believed in the LORD.’”
Acts 9:36, 40, 41 (NIV)

I finished Mr. H’s floor and left a note for a second grade. (My first grade had been a failure).

Today is my last day of fasting for Ms. C. We had unit prayer group and went to the San Francisco Christian Center seminar with Rev C. They were talking about the gifts that God gives us and used the scripture about Dorcas above. They asked who had a prophecy, so I raised my hand. Claudia and some of the others prophesied to him, “In the past, you thought that you could fix things, but now God is going to fix them. God will come at a moment’s notice, and He will validate you in front of your people. You already have the anointing. I’ll bring the response that brings glory to me. God is going to give you a real friend – one that won’t use you.”

Then I went up; my stomach was burning, and I was shaking. I laid one hand on his head, and one on his heart, and I waited. Then, I started to weep. I said exactly what came to my mind, “That thing that is trying to trip you up, let it go. Cast it down to the ground or it will trip you up. You’re gonna pick it up and play with it for a while, but after you cast it down, I will restore you.” God told me that word is going to come to pass, so don’t be dismayed at their faces. Be bold, but watch that the flesh doesn’t get involved.  (Later, I was told that what I had said was exactly right.)

“For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”
  Galatians 5:14 (NRSV)

Today I attended prayer meeting, walked, typed, and went to unit prayer group. Then I stripped the floor under the vending machine in the staff lounge. I give thanks for what Marnie is trying to do against me. At 12:30 prayer meeting, I prayed over sister Constance and she got slain in the spirit! I felt Holy Spirit nudge me to pray for her and so did Ms. L. Jessie just had to make a negative comment, but I ignored her and just shed His love abroad through me to her as I wept.

In unit prayer group, we talked about how Edison had 6000 tries to make the light bulb and that a mistake is simply a lesson which you will work through if you don’t quit. It is one step you take down the path toward discovering what will work. So, instead of beating yourself up for making a mistake, it would be more appropriate to congratulate yourself because you have made a discovery. Now you can move on and try something else. Most great inventions come at the end of a long list of mistakes. In fact, that mistake may have been the last thing that didn’t work before the one that will. We must regard mistakes as stepping stones toward greater knowledge.

This morning I buffed the dining room, and I stopped and actually talked normal to Mr. G. I told him that I am going home soon because I am going to win my appeal! I buffed the whole dining room, then came home (to my cell). Sherrie was asleep. She woke up and told me she had a dream that Mr. G came up to her and said, “So, Katie is going home soon!”  Wow that can’t be a coincidence!

Today, everybody else on floor crew got stuck in the dining room, but I travailed in prayer meeting, so it was meant to be that I didn’t work lunch. We got two new people on the crew, but Marnie trained them. I must die to self.  The Lord is testing me, I must hand over the floor crew.  I don’t want or need control. I will do my job well, but I won’t stress or try to control anything anymore. Also, He is testing me on giving my things away… like the stuff I covet – my radio, cream, etc. The measure I use is the measure returned to me, shaken, pressed down, flowing over into my lap!

How do you look at mistakes or failure? Have you found that you are harder on yourself than you are on others when they make the same mistake you made? Why is that?

What gifts have God given to you?

What have you tried to do, but failed, and need to try again?

Comment below what you learned from this devotional. We love hearing from you!

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  • Earl Pomeroy

    You have encouraged me to keep trying as I seek to bring healing to my wife who is afflicted with many ailments. By His stripes we are healed. It will manifest eventually if I don’t quit.

  • Cathy Rodriguez

    Hi Katie thank you so much for the message….. Yes in the past I have been so hard on myself I have grown in many area’s and still healing in others church hurt is were my soul needs deep healing….. no matter what I will keep my eyes on the prize JESUS allowing healing in my whole being….. Katie by the way do you know anyone who does prison ministry my son is open

  • Barbara

    As I read this devotional, I felt a sense of peace and calmness. I feel the Living Water of our Lord flowing through. This gives me peace to accept my anointing and trust his timing.

  • Kathy Stayer

    Thank you, Katie, for this (and every devotional). I make quilts (not by hand), and I was commissioned to make one for this lady. When I gave it to her, she didn’t like it. I was crushed… Holy Spirit helped me see that I can learn from this mistake, and not make it again! Your word about mistakes in this devotional confirmed and healed my heart from this experience. No bitterness left, and I can pray for her and myself to remake the quilt in excellence. Much love.

  • Uncle Jerry

    Excellent! The key to perseverance is trust. You have modeled this in a wonderful way. You go girl!

  • Nancy Sauro

    Thank you! I really enjoyed reading that! I especially “awhh”ed when you boldly gave Mr. C a prophetic word that I am sure so encouraged him…And what a word! I am praying for inmates that they feel the love of the Father so close, especially now that Mrs. Dorothy can’t go and visit them…She has been doing it for years and is over 80! When she recently, (Fall of 2019) thought of laying it down, she heard the Holy Spirit say, “work while it is yet day”! Wow! now no one can go due to covid…precious Lord, who do we have in heaven or earth but YOU!! We love you Jesus!