God’s Word for Today: Winner. Saturday, the word for the day was win. There were so many directions to go with this word that I believe Saturday’s message didn’t come close to expressing what win is all about. So, this week we will consider it “A Week of Winners”. Let us see where it takes us.
Thanks to my sister Peggy, I found out the man I was talking about in Saturday’s message was E.P. Baruth. Once I had the name in my possession, it was Goggle time. I suppose if I had done some more in-depth Googling to begin with, I wouldn’t have had to ask for E.P.’s name. Either way, we now have a real live person to talk about. E.P. will be our first “winner” for the week.
First, I do need to make a correction to Saturday’s post. I stated that at the close of Coaches Coffee Club, E.P. would always say “It does not matter whether you win or lose, it is how you play the game”. I am almost positive he would say this every Saturday, but it wasn’t E.P.’s closing statement. His actual closing statement was “Today is Saturday. Tomorrow is Sunday. On Sunday go to Church. Go to the church of your choice, but go. Now, my time is up. Thank you for yours”.
That statement was a good summary of how E.P. lived his life. E.P. loved sports. I didn’t know E.P. personally. I believe I met him a time or two, and I know I sat with him in Masonic Lodge. I probably even listened to a speech or talk he gave. I apologize that at E.P.’s height in life, I was still too young and ignorant in mine. I did not come close to appreciating what E.P. was all about.
From articles written about E.P., I have come to this conclusion. E.P. lived his life as if it were a sport itself. He tried to make every day an all-out race to get as much done as he could. It was interesting to read about E.P.’s involvement in sports. He was quite the track star himself, and via Hastings College, his 1 mile relay team held the record for 40 years. Ironically the relay team that finally beat his record contained 2 athletes that E.P. himself had coached. I can imagine how very proud E.P. was. In summary, E.P. did his best to help others always do their best. Can a true winner be defined as one whose main goal in life is to help others win? I think so.
Philippians 3:14. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
When you think of winner, typically it involves someone who finished their race first. Or a team that defeated all the other teams and were officially determined the winners. Or someone who received the highest score above everyone else in whatever competition.
What if we looked at being a winner not in finishing, but in the competition itself? Someone like E.P. Baruth can be rather irritating. They are always giving life everything they have. What if I really don’t want to be that way? What if I want to be more tranquil and just kind of sit back and take life as it comes? If everybody was going full bore all the time, would there be any appreciation for the simple things in life? How can I be a winner every day and still enjoy a good cup of coffee?
Therein those questions is possibly the answer. Like I said earlier, I did not know E.P. personally. Who knows, maybe inside he was crawling with self-doubt and loneliness. Maybe his only way of coping with his own faults was keeping one step ahead of them. I don’t know. I can’t say for sure. Probably not, but who knows?
What I am saying is that each and every one of us is running our own race. Whether outwardly we are going full bore, a nice steady pace, barely moving, or maybe even going backwards. That is outer appearance. And, not one of us alive has the right to tell another how to run their race in life. It is theirs. We can help. We can offer advice, strength, direction, and any number of things if needed and asked for. But, we cannot run their race for them. It is our job to be winners in our own lives.
Today, realize that each and every day you can be a winner. Maybe today you are a winner because you stopped long enough to smell the roses. Maybe today you are a winner because you helped someone else crawl out of their hole. Maybe today you are a winner because you took control of your life that had been spinning out of control. There are no maybes about being a winner when today, you chose to put God first……………………
Prayer: My dearest and leading Father. I thank you for a day that I can be a winner. Forgive me for the days that You, God were not first and thus I lost some ground. Today I ask that I live for what is important in this life you blessed me with. Today, I want to win in your name, Lord. Thank you for helping me be the winner you have asked me to be. This I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.