"I was brutish and ignorant; I was like a beast towards you. Nevertheless, I am continually with you, you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory.
A couple years ago, I had my last spelling bee. I was super excited, super confident, and 99% sure I was gonna win. I even gave my competitor a proud "u better watch it" look. I'd never done anything like that before, but I was so ready for that win I did it anyway.
Well, lo and behold, I missed the very first word. Satan's still trying to get me to make up excuses for why I lost, and, sadly, I sometimes give in, but long story short, I added an 's' to the end of the word. And let me just say- I was horrified. I was so shocked that I had gotten the easiest word wrong on the first round that I burst into tears. My pride was tragically smooshed that day.
My volleyball coach told us this the other day: "You either win, or you don't win. When you don't win, you learn, and you improve." There is no such word as "lose" in our vocabulary.
Proverbs 24:16 tells us, "For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity" (italics added).
When I look back on that day when I didn't win, I realize I needed that not-win badly. My pride was building up, making me over-confident, and I was becoming the opposite of what God tells us to be.
"When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom" (Proverbs 11:2).
"Be completely humble" (Ephesians 4:2).
"Pride goes before destruction" (Proverbs 16:18).
At that moment, I couldn't think of anything else besides the fact that I had lost. But now, I am so thankful I didn't win. Because if I had won, what would I have been like today? Proud, arrogant, and self-conceited? But it's not a loss- I have learned so much from that day. One, not to be proud (and I'm still struggling with that), two, to look beyond the here-and-now, and three, that God is still in control and has a perfect plan.
Sometimes we can get stuck in what's going on right now that we forget to look up. We are so caught up in what is going on in the physical, seen world that we forget what is going on in the spiritual, unseen portions. Even if the worse thing you can think of happens, God is still in control and He has a perfect plan.
And God really can use momentarily bad things for something good. He'll teach you something through the hardships. You'll get out of the bottom of that valley and realize God was trying to teach you something, because He's on our side if we believe in Him- the God of the UNIVERSE is on our side!! He wants the best for you. Sometimes that means not winning- other times it may mean something much deeper. But He's got you!
So this week, I challenge you to look beyond what is happening right now and to remember that God is in control- even when it doesn't feel like it. And stay humble! I'm praying for you. Also, if anyone needs prayer, feel free to visit the Prayer Corner, where you can submit prayer requests. There will be no judging what you write, but instead people around the world will be praying for you, including me. Or, you can email me via the contact page. I'm here for y'all. 😄❤
"I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but take heart;
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"I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all of my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds."