My family has a repertoire of favorite card games: Play Nine, Skip Bo, Garbage. We can be pretty competitive in all of them. For Christmas, a good friend gave each member of my family a unique deck of cards for the game Peanuts. It’s great fun! We race through our cards, try to help my six-year-old sister, Mary, and occasionally fight about who is cheating.
Yes, it’s annoying when you can’t win a card game, but it can be exhausting when you feel like you aren’t winning at life.
In the Bible, God made a promise to a man named Abram.
Genesis 13:14-16 (TLB)
14 After Lot was gone, the Lord said to Abram, “Look as far as you can see in every direction, 15 for I am going to give it all to you and your descendants. 16 And I am going to give you so many descendants that, like dust, they can’t be counted!
At that moment, Abram wasn’t really winning. The land God promised was inhabited by other clans, and Abram had no children to begin those countless descendants. Yet, not only did God promise both of those things to Abram, God told him to start enjoying them right away. I love how this verse is captured in the version below.
Genesis 13:17 (TLB)
Hike in all directions and explore the new possessions I am giving you.”
Like the promise God made to Abram, God’s promise to us is victory. Not some time in the future—now—right this very moment, even on those days when everything seems to go wrong.
Romans 8:35 & 37
35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? … 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
“Victory is ours,” not will be ours. Rather than fighting for victory, we can rest in the wonderful knowledge that God has already won, even when we feel like losers.
I find that I remember more of the laughter and jokes of family games than who won and by how much. Sure, we are competitive and loud, and sometimes, games end in tears, but the real victory is enjoying time together, even if we haven’t won.
God says that he has won for us, and that we don’t need to wait to celebrate that victory. We can start the party today.
What makes you feel like a winner? What makes you feel like a loser? How can you remind yourself on hard days that God has guaranteed victory?
Next time you start blaming yourself or give into fear, remember that God has already won. Go, and “explore the new possessions [God is] giving you” (Genesis 13:17b TLB). Make time to enjoy God’s blessings today—consider learning to play Peanuts with your family or go on a winter walk together.
Day 5 Focus – To search my heart (Psalm 139:23-24)
Heavenly Father, as I come to know and trust you more, help me to reflect your love through my thoughts and actions. Search my heart. Find anything in me that is offensive to you, and help me remove it from my life. Lead me to live a life that draws people to you. Help me live my life on Earth in a way that impacts eternity. In Jesus’ name, amen.
This post was written by Lydia Snyder. Lydia has been a story-lover for as long as she can remember, often found reading books or writing. She is thrilled to be making a difference by inspiring others to take part in the best story ever – God’s story. Lydia lives with her three wonderful siblings and two amazing parents.
Dear Father, I am so grateful to have you near me, guiding me with your voice. Give me the faith and patience to listen, so that I will not stray from the path you have planned for me—the path that I trust will keep me safe and bring me closer to you. Amen
God, I am in awe of you. Your name is a strong tower, a place of protection and safety for me. I praise you as my healer, my shepherd, and my hope. You are my peace, my provider, my righteousness, and my joy. Your name is great, and I worship you. Amen.
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