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Failures & Victories

Victory in Jesus

A winning team cheering as it carries a trophy high above their heads. An Olympic gymnast winning a gold medal for her country. These are moments of Victory, are they not?

We think we know defeat when we see it, too.

An exhausted, losing team with heads hung low, making their way back to the locker room.

Indeed growing up, it was “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” (the opening segment, each week on ABC’s wide world of sports where the separation of winner and loser was dramatically played out.

Victory and defeat. Two very different experiences in the human drama. One thrilling / One humiliating. One we welcome. One we avoid at all costs.

We avoid Defeat – we pursue victory. But God in Christ sets his face toward Jerusalem, toward suffering, toward the cross of his execution – and in doing so he turns death into life. Defeat into Victory.

What the world sees as failure, can sometimes be the path to winning that we just don't see at the time. Take for instance the man who tumbled of fthe ski slope in that opening segment of the WIDE WORLD OF SPORTS that I used to watch as a kid. His tremendous tumble caused a rush of paramedics to his rescue only to discover he suffered no major injury. The reason? He told interviewers a decade later that it was becaus he purposely bailed on the slope after he calculated that the ice conditions. He prevented a worse fall by deciding to "quit" mid-slope, losing the event but saving his own life.

What can seem like failure, might actually be a saving act. What appears to be a great loss, might actually be an even greater victory.

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