Over the course of my lifetime, it strikes me that more and more emphasis seems to be placed upon one word, “winner.” Certainly in the world of sports, keeping score and proclaiming victory makes sense, as it does in various other arenas as well; that is, at least on face value. It is clear that in so many ways society determines success based upon who has won and who has lost.
However, I cannot help but wonder, in a civilized, advanced society, why is so much importance placed on this label? Somewhere along the journey, it seems like this, and other labels, have taken on a life of their own and, over time, have been carried to an extreme. It does not take much effort to see the mantra’s “win at all costs” and “do whatever it takes to win” taking on life and operating in the world. While I am sure this has almost always been the case, given human nature, the extent to which it occurs seems so much greater in today’s world than in years past.
How did we get here? I imagine gradually…subtly. Rather than giving in to fear and feeling deflated or defeated though, there is another question, “What can I do to make it better?”, and there are more choices to make.
As I reflect on the past few months in the United States, I keep asking myself, “Since when is it unacceptable and intolerable to see value in more than one side?”
It seems that when so much is focused on “winning” rather than on operating with openness, honesty and integrity, we all lose. It is only when we focus on genuinely trying to see, and bring out the best in each other, that we truly win.
Oftentimes in life, it can be tempting to think we are losing or that we have lost, when we are actually in the process of gaining. Although we may not be able to put a finger on it, to name it, or see it in any kind of physical sense, the Spirit is waiting to bring good (whether it is wisdom, insight or something else) out of and into all that may seem like defeat. We must allow for hope and possibility that great things can happen to, for and through anybody, at any time.
“When you have no helpers, see your helpers in God. When you have many helpers, see God in all your helpers. When you have nothing but God, see all in God. When you have everything, see God in everything. Under all conditions, stay thy heart only on the Lord.” – Charles Spurgeon