Todd Bailey Ministries

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Potential - Part 2

Todd Bailey

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Dormant ability, reserved power, untapped strength, unused success, hidden talents and capability.

In the last newsletter, I wrote about the definition of the word potential that a friend of mine sent me:  “Dormant ability reserved power, untapped strength, unused success, hidden talents and capability.”  We previously covered the aspects of dormant ability, reserved power and untapped strength.  In this article, we will review the last three characteristics of potential:  unused success, hidden talents and capability.

The word “potential” in the dictionary is defined as:

(1) Possible but not yet realized; capable of being but not yet in existence.

(2) Denoting possibility, capability, or power.

(3) The inherent ability or capacity for growth, development, or coming into being."

I would like to take these last three individual descriptions of potential that I received from my friend, and see what God's Word and different individuals have said in relation to each of these descriptions.


The dictionary meaning of success is: “The achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted. The gaining of fame or prosperity. One that is successful.”

When I think of someone that had unused success and developed his potential to where he became one of the most successful individuals was Abraham Lincoln. I was reading a story about President Lincoln that quoted him saying, “I do the very best I know how---the very best I can; and I mean to keep doing so.”  The person writing this story went on to say about President Lincoln, “Abraham Lincoln’s life is the best example of his own words. Consider the chronology of his career: 1831-Failed in Business, 1832-Defeated for Legislature, 1833-Again failed in business, 1834-Elected to legislature, 1835-Sweetheart died, 1836-Had nervous breakdown, 1838-Defeated for speaker, 1840-Defeated for elector, 1843-Defeated for Congress, 1846-Elected for Congress, 1848-Defeated for Congress, 1855-Defeated for Senate, 1856 Defeated for Vice-President, 1858-Defeated for Senate, 1860-ELECTED PRESIDENT!”

President Lincoln had this to say about success, “Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”

In order, to be a success in life and reach your full potential you need to desire, plan or attempt something.  I use this statement frequently when I minister, “I would rather aim at the moon and hit the top of the trees, then aim at nothing and hit it every time.”  Another statement that I have used on numerous occasions is, “The road to success is always under construction.”

Bobby Unser a famous Indy race car driver said, “Success is where preparation and opportunity meet.”  This quote goes right along with what Vidal Sassoon said, “The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.”

God’s Word tells us in Joshua:

Joshua 1:8

This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.


The dictionary meaning of talent is: “A mental or physical aptitude; specific natural or acquired ability. Natural endowment or ability of a superior quality.”

Most people don’t think they have any special talents.  I believe we all have talents they are just hidden inside us.  You might not be the best at something, but that shouldn’t stop you from giving your best.

Maybe you can do what thousands of other people can, but you can do it in your own unique way.

A scripture that really shows the potential we have in us, if we just stay faithful and let God lead us:

Proverbs 18:16

A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.

Even the Apostle Paul encouraged the young Timothy to stir up his gift (potential).

2 Timothy 1:6

Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.


The dictionary meaning of capability is: “The quality of being capable; physical, mental, or capacity or ability. Potential ability. The capacity to be used, treated, or developed for a specific purpose.”

Norman Vincent Peale, author of the book, “The Power of Positive Thinking,” was published in 1952 and has sold nearly 20 million copies and has been printed in 41 different languages. ……stated, “Anybody can do just about anything with himself that he really wants to and makes up his mind to do. We are capable of greater things than we realize.”  Another quote that I like from Dr. Peale is, “Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.”

You have “potential ability” inside of you!  But it is going to take some effort and action to develop your capability. The book of James tells us, “So also faith if it does not have works (deeds and actions of obedience to back it up), by itself is destitute of power—inoperative, dead.”

Benjamin Franklin said, “Well done is better than well said.”

General George S. Patton once stated, “Always do more than is required of you.”

Wayne Gretzky, Hall of Fame Hockey Player, said, “You’ll miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

Even the bible it states that you have capability.

Remember, God is our source and we the resource.

John 15:5 (Amplified) reminds us where our potential (capability) comes from, “I am the Vine, you are the branches.  Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit.  However, apart from Me – cut off from vital union with Me – you can do nothing.”

Philippians 4:13 (Amplified)

I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me—I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me, [that is, I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency.)

After reading this article, you might be thinking, “I know what you’re saying, but…”  Don’t let excuses stop you from reaching your full potential in life; we all have potential!

Last year, my wife and I were cleaning the house and I remember hearing myself say, “Let’s do what we can, with what we have, where we are at.”  This might be a simple statement, but it is something that has made an impact in both of our lives.

John Wooden, famous College Basketball coach once said, “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”

 Let’s develop and bring out the potential that God has placed inside each of us. Ability that is no longer dormant, power that has no reserve, strength being tapped, success that is experienced, talents no longer hidden, and capability abounding.

Mark 9:23 (NASB)

And Jesus said to him, "If You can?' All things are possible to him who believes.”

Mark 9:23 (Amplified)

And Jesus said, [You say to Me], If You can do anything? [Why,] all things can be--are possible-- to him who believes!