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The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?


While rolling my clothes into the suitcase for the youth trip, I pondered new ways to persuade the school to accept my idea. I had used reasoning and humanitarian appeals, and nobody was signing on to my envisioned LGBTQ club. What more could I do?

The next day, I woke to raindrops softly splashing the window. I checked my phone, finding another disappointing email. The club I had hoped to establish was rejected once again. I propped myself against the wall by my bed and glared at the ray of light struggling to shine through dark rain clouds, wondering why my club idea was rejected for the third time.

When my church mates and I arrived at Awanita, a kind of dorm built for church retreats, we ran, swam, zip lined across the woods, climbed trees, rode horses, and walked in the mountain air. After two days of pure, natural freedom, we were exhausted. On the final day, four hours before returning home, I, as leader of our group, asked to stay inside to play various card and board games as bonding activities. Our pastor, who assumed that we teenagers were tired from long nights on our smartphones, refused. Baffled by his supposition that all teenagers are obsessed with technology, I reasoned that it was impossible to enjoy our...

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