At the risk of sounding like the cartoon character, The Born Loser, I confess to you that I’ve had my share of losing. In four seasons as a high school football player for example, we won 6 of 40 games and 2 of those 6 were taken away for using an ineligible player.
I’m not sure how you’re feeling, but as we reach the midpoint of 2020, it sure seems like we could use a win right now. Recent statistical research among Southern Baptists and Louisiana Baptists reminds us we are losing ground on almost every number we count. The recent Supreme Court decisions regarding the redefinition of “sex” and the striking down of a Louisiana law mandating abortion providers have hospital admitting privileges feel like big losses. The escalation of racial tensions driven by injustices cause us to wonder if we have lost ground as it relates to race relations in America. And, if you believe many of the news reports, we seem to be falling behind in the fight against COVID-19.
I don’t know about you, but I sure could use a “win.”
So, this begs the question, what do we do when we need a win? I want to encourage us today to do at least three things.
- Watch your words. Blaming somebody else is not going move us towards a win. Recently, several of our SBC leaders produced a video spot where they agreed, “It’s on me!” I love that spirit. I join them. “It’s on me.” I can do better. I must do better.
- Keep Working. Looking back on my high school football days, one thing that I have always appreciated about my coaches is that they never let us quit. We practiced and prepared as hard and as long in week 10 as we did in week 1. Even though we have lost some ground, we must keep working. There is always something to do. Let me offer one real solution in light of the Supreme Court decision against Louisiana abortion law. Let the decision prompt you to make a donation to your local pregnancy center, the Louisiana Baptist Children’s Home, or even a family who is working toward adoption. Take a loss and make it your win.
- Keep reminding yourself that ultimately, we win. If losing has taught me anything in life, it has taught me that winning is sweet and never to be taken for granted. When I went on to play football at a small college, we won our first 7 games my freshman year. I won more games in my first 7 college games than my four years of high school. And, it was sweet! The Bible is clear that ultimately those of us, in Christ, will win.
So, think on these words . . .
Galatians 6:9 – Let us not get tired of doing good, for we will reap at the proper time if we don’t give up.
1 Corinthians 2:9 – What no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no human heart has conceived—God has prepared these things for those who love him.
Isaiah 50:7, Living Bible – Because the Lord God helps me I will not be dismayed. Therefore I have set my face like flint to do His will and I know that I will triumph.