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“Everyone’s a Winner!”

Sounds like a hawker at the county fair, enticing folks to play games for prizes. It was also the motto of the soccer league two of my kids played in for six years while in elementary school. The league was run by a local church, and followed a pattern the other churches used: games were not scored; at the end of the season, all players were awarded a trophy; every one was a winner.

Fast forward twenty years. Kids can vote at age eighteen in America. And if they learned the same lessons as the church soccer league, they didn’t learn how to lose. In our lives here on Earth not all are winners; some are losers.

What happened to “socialization” that was once taught in kindergarten? In the fifties when I started school, we sure didn’t learn that “every one wins.” What we did learn, however, was how to lose gracefully. And we learned how to win gracefully, as well.

There is hope, however. In all the wrestling matches I watched while my son wrestled in high school, I saw only a handful of what we might call soar losers. I watched so many winners give hugs to their opponents. I watched winners help his opponent up off the matt after the match. Kids from opposing teams talked with one another, more friends with a shared sport, than opponents or enemies. Were those kids that lost mad when the lost? Sure. They were mad, not at their opponent, but at themselves. They knew their mistakes, their own weaknesses. All those things and more is what the kids would work on throughout practices the following week.

It’s called sportsmanship. It’s all part of the game. At the private high school two of my kids attended, sports was put at the top of the list of activities students were encouraged to do. All student were required to perform at least twelve hours of community service each semester. Many served more than the minimum hours, too.

Those years of soccer my two youngest kids played resulted in a lot of trophies. All are in a box somewhere. Forgotten. Just as well, too. Not every one wins. Not in this life. That’s something kids need to learn. Many have learned, too. Some have not. Those are the vocal ones we see in the news these days. Shame, really.

But in the next life it will be different. For those who, during this life on Earth, come to know YeshuaJesus as L-RD, there awaits a wonderful life in Heaven. And all those trophies earned by righteous acts by G-D’s people while on Earth are not forgotten, but given away.

The twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.”—Revelation 4:10-11 (ESV)
(Emphasis Added)

During our Earthly lives, living by the power of the Spirit of G-D, we earn spiritual crowns. We rightfully yield all that has been earned to the One who made it all possible. We are all winners. Equally winners with Messiah who, for our sakes, lived, died, rose, and has taken His place on the Throne.