2 Timothy 4:7-8 – ” I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
It’s soccer season at my house. That means winning games and losing games. And these last couple of days have been a lesson in losing.
My son is on a new team that consist of many boys who do not really know each other. They are struggling to work together. There is no real leader of the team, except for the coach, and thus there is no real heart of the team. They are playing for themselves without a passion for their teammates. It can sometimes be very tough to watch. They have the potential to be extraordinary but they need heart.
But despite their troubles and challenges, they won a game yesterday. Winning this game did nothing to promote their standing in the tournament but it has the potential to do amazing things to their mental standing.
They didn’t give up.
When Paul was writing to Timothy here, in part, he wanted to encourage Timothy to never give up, even when you lose. Paul had run many races, so to speak, and fought many battles. He didn’t win them all. In fact, a few of them nearly killed him, literally. But he didn’t give up. He ran the race until it was completed.
We need to do the same thing. We are not going to win every single time. We are not going to be successful each and every time. We are not going to always see the fruit of our labor. But we have to keep going. We can’t let not winning, not being successful and not seeing our fruit keep us from doing what God says to do when He says to do it.
We need to let our loses bring us strength. It can show us resilience. It can show us passion. It can show us love. It can show us our weakness and tell us how to become stronger. But we have to be willing to look, and we need to decide that we are going to keep going.
There are lessons in winning but there are so many more when we lose. Winning is fun. It is enjoyable and fulfilling. But losing has the potential to make us better and stronger. Don’t let losing get you down. Let it build you up.