“Knowing Christ is the best thing that has ever happened to me, although winning the US Open was a pretty good second.”
Do not forget the LORD!Be careful that you do not forget the LORD who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. Deuteronomy 6: 12
This instruction to the Israelites several thousand years ago is a timely reminder to us too. God had rescued them from the oppression of Egypt with a succession of miracles – the crossing of the Red Sea (Exodus 14), feeding them with manna and quail (Exodus 16), producing water from a rock (Exodus 17) etc. Yet they needed to be told not to forget the Lord.
Sport has given so much to my life. I am sure you feel the same. We have so much to be thankful for. But sometimes life is tough – injury, not making the team and perhaps the hardest of all to deal with – not performing to the level you know you are capable of. (Or not performing to the standard you used to be able to!)
When things are hard it is easy to forget the Lord. It is easy to focus on the injury, the disappointment, the frustration of seeing friends go off to compete while you sit in rehab.
I know an athlete who has had a lot of success who told me that when she loses she tries to smile and say it was someone else’s turn to win and be thankful that she was able to be in the race. What a great attitude. But don’t misunderstand her – she will be working even harder next week to make sure she wins next time but still with an attitude that accepts the outcome graciously.
In moments like this it is important to remember that our worth and our identity are not in our athletic success but in who we are. We have been created by God, redeemed by Jesus with the certainty of spending eternity with God. That doesn’t mean that the disappointment of the bad performance or the tedious repetitive rehab are not hard but it gives a perspective.
And it reminds us not to forget the Lord.