Friday, October 19, 2018
Standing Up to the Test
Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us? But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says, "God opposes the proud, but shows favor to the humble. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
Down here in the South, we're crazy about our college football. Georgia is no exception, and though there are faithful fans of Georgia Tech, my husband, Danny's, alma mater, overwhelmingly, our population roots for the University of Georgia Bulldogs. They affectionately refer to themselves as the "Dawg Nation." And with this season's first six football games being won by huge margins, fans are, well, fanatic about winning! Visions of a championship for Georgia are most definitely dancing in their heads in light of this powerhouse team.
It's no wonder, then, that last Saturday, hopes are running high as the Dawgs take on LSU at Tiger Stadium. Surely, Georgia will stomp the Tigers just as easily as they've conquered their previous opponents.
But the Tigers are having none of it. Putting the Dawgs to the test, the team comes out roaring and clawing, and when the smoke finally clears, it is anything but good news for Georgia. David has whooped Goliath 36-16.
I'm sure the Georgia players are still wondering what hit them. And humble pie has probably been on the menu this entire week as they pick themselves up, brush themselves off, and prepare to meet their arch rival, the Florida Gators, in tomorrow's game at Jacksonville.
Losing never feels good nor right. Yet, perhaps, the Dawgs had become a bit puffed up with pride at their record wins. Maybe having been taken down a notch will turn out to be a good thing in the long run for them. If they persevere through this trial, taking a long, hard look at their attitudes and abilities, changing in ways that help the entire team work better together, it can only bring blessings upon them.
And as much as I hate to admit it, it's been in times of adversity and loss, when I have humbled myself before the Lord, and asked for the help only He can give, that I've learned the most about who I am as His child. I'm sure you, too, can cite many examples in your own lives that reflect this very same experience.
Standing up to the test . . .
Is it pleasant? No. Is it easy? No.
But it is necessary. Because it is in the hard and difficult moments that God's grace can brim to overflowing, filling our hearts and minds with conviction that we can overcome, and be made better versions of the persons He created us to be.
So we will see tomorrow if the Dawgs have humbled themselves before the Lord, so that He might lift them up.
Amen, and Go, Dawgs!
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