How Do We Handle Losing?
I woke up this morning to see news stories of protests by mainly younger voters. The Holy Spirit whispered to me, “This is a generation of participation trophies.” It had never occurred to me that all those years of raising children with the belief that we are all winners and there are no losers, would lead to adults not able to handle losing. Even college students that voted for Mr. Trump have acted like it was a foregone conclusion that their candidate won. Our society of “everyone needs to feel good” has created a monster.
Before going too crazy on this soapbox, let me change direction for a moment. I was raised just the opposite of today’s youth; I was the family scapegoat growing up. If anything didn’t go someone’s way, my family turned to me and found something to fault. I was raised to believe that losing was a normal way of life and when I lost or a family member lost it was my fault and I should have done better. I certainly didn’t expect to win and expected to feel the pain of defeat. I learned to cope by refusing to feel anything. I figured it would be better to be numb than walk around constantly seeing the pain of all my faults.
Both scenarios are wrong. We live in a fallen world, and painful things occur because of that. But even beyond that, God created us all different. Some people are very artistic and their work deserves the blue ribbon while others without talent do not deserve the same accolades. God created some with amazing running abilities. Those runners are the ones we see stretching out for the finish line while those without such great ability sit cheering in the stands. “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize?” 1Cor 9:24. There are people who are the best in the world in different categories and that makes for a lot who are not. Those who do not win have to learn to accept defeat but at the same time learn that defeat does not define who they are.
God defines who we are, never a medal around our neck or not around our neck. God calls all people to Himself where He will call them child. My identity has never nor will ever be scapegoat. My identity is in my Father who calls me to be with Him. How about you? Do you look to an elected official to make your life better or are you looking to the Creator of your life? No matter where life takes you, you will experience losses and successes. Don’t let either define who you are, find it solely in the arms of the Father. “And Jesus took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them.” Mark 10:16
“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs-heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” Rom 8:16-17 ESV