This is my favorite blog post that I have read this week. If you've never visited the (In)Courage site, you really really should. Anyway, this is the post that was on their site this morning. I just love it and hope that I can start looking at defeat this way. Enjoy!
Satan Hates Sprinkles
My dad is famous for his optimism; as far as most people are concerned he is completely candy-coated. He lives out James 1:2 unlike anyone I have ever met. “Consider it pure joy my brothers whenever you face trials of many kinds.” That’s my dad, joy in the face of trial.
When I was growing up my siblings and I never had problems--we had opportunities. We didn’t have hardships--we learned lessons. We were always “better than we deserved”, “at an all time high” and super “f-a-n-t-a-s-t-i-c”!
Even when joy didn’t make sense.
As a young girl I remember a time when my dad ran for School Board re-election. I felt nervous about the outcome of the race and I recall asking my dad what he would do if he lost. He smiled his usual smile and laughed his usual laugh then said, “If I lose, you and I will go out for hot-fudge sundaes.”
Before I was old enough to appreciate the spiritual application, I remembered how odd it was to celebrate losing.
After all, nothing screams defeat like confetti and balloons.
Or does it? Celebration in the midst of struggle is odd for our human nature because it can’t be attained without God. It can often be the only weapon we have that keeps us from falling.
Our common enemy has come to “kill, steal and destroy but Christ has come to give us abundant life” John 10:10. Praise and thankfulness throw a big chink in the chain Satan specially designed to keep us down and out.
My dad ended up losing the re-election that year, and he could have gotten angry. He could have demanded a recount. He could have scorned his opponent and vented his frustration. He could have wallowed, but he would have promptly chained himself in bitterness.
Instead he kept his word and we went out for ice cream. In this particular situation I watched my dad rejoice rather than rant, and thanks to my dad, the joy of the Lord tastes a lot like sundaes with sprinkles on top.
by Ginny Martyn