September 19, 2022

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
– Psalm 34:18 (ESV)

Sports are a two-headed monster. In most every competition there is the thrill of victory but, there is also the agony of defeat. Things have not gone the way you expected. A pitcher takes a no-hitter into the ninth inning only to lose on an untimely error. A fumble at the goal line snatches away a sure win. The deciding point in a tennis match come on a ball that tips the net and painfully drops over. Things have not gone the way you wanted. Your hopes and expectations have been crushed and you have to find a way to get over the disappointment. Where do you go? Certainly, spending time with your teammates and coaches is important. Maybe a little private time can help you process the frustration as well. But where does God fit in? Does He really care about your disappointment? I think He cares very much.

While God may not be concerned with who won or lost, He certainly cares about His children when they are hurting. We all too often try to run away from our troubles. Who in their right mind likes pain, sorrow or failure? The daily frustrations of sport and life can wear us down and leave us disappointed with ourselves or our situation. We must not forget that if God cares about us and He does, He is never far away from our struggles. In Psalm 34:18, David tells us the Lord is near when we are disappointed, and our spirit is crushed. If we let Him, He will be our source of courage and power as we work through the disappointment. Sometimes He may bring us out of our problems and at other times, He may simply let us work through them while teaching us valuable lessons. The take-away is that we do not have to deal with disappointment in our own strength. Admit that you need God’s help and be thankful for His never-ending presence.

Heavenly Father, thank You for always being there. With Your strength, guide me through the disappointments of this day. Amen.

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