You lost your job….
You lost a bet……..
You lost a baby………..
You lost a dog………….
You lost a friend……….
You lost your wife……..
You lost your keys…………………
You lost a lot of money………….
You lost the game.
Loss is everywhere. We lose everyday. Some losses are great and can devastate us financially or emotionally. But some losses are not significant. But we make them that way. We put much emphasis on things that don’t matter and on losses that have no lasting impact on our lives.
Last night, Vancouver LOST the Stanley Cup final. They lost in a game where someone would win and someone would lose. Every person who watches a game in any sport knows full well that there will be a winner and a loser. That is what a game is. I often remind my husband when the Calgary Flames lose that “it’s only a game”. He hates that. To the avid sports fan winning is everything. But still, it’s only a game. In the loss last night the Vancouver fans booed during the presentations of the Conn Smythe Trophy and Stanley Cup Trophy. Sure, they may have been booing Bettman, the most hated man in the NHL, but how it came across was booing the winners. In the streets afterwards, hooligans hell-bent on causing damage, raged through the streets setting fires, destroying property and hurting each other. Why? Because of a game? Because of loss? Or because they can?
Meanwhile, in Libya, Greece, Pakistan, Israel, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan…people rage for democracy. People rage for peace(slightly paradoxical). People rage for mercy.
In Saskatchewan, picketers demand to be heard. They are losing. But really, what is loss to them? Loss of something they never had to begin with? That is exactly what unions and picketers protest for: what they never really had to begin with.
In this season of loss for us, I have been challenged and convicted. Why do I weep for the loss of things? Why do I weep for the loss of a bank account or a job? Loss is subjective. And it’s time to put it in perspective. Losing sucks. But it isn’t catastrophic. Without loss, we can’t fully appreciate sweet victory. Without loss we can’t grasp the concept of gratitude. I heard a quote the other day and it has stuck:
Gratitude is knowing that what you have is enough.
Maybe it’s time for all of us to assess what we have. Is it enough? Is learning the lesson enough? Is having your current job enough? Is having your children enough? When will we be thankful for what we have instead of griping about what we have lost or what we’re “losing” out on?
Boston won. They deserved to win. I like a hard-fought series like anyone else. But it’s a game. And all of those players have bigger salaries(win or lose) than I will ever hope to achieve. In a world full of loss it’s time to get some perspective. Teachers~ you’re doing just fine and you don’t need an extra $50 or $100 on your paycheque to believe that. Postal Workers and Air Canada employees: listen to your bosses. They’re being fair and reasonable. There are a lot of people who do not have the jobs or security that you do~ be grateful.
In loss we have 2 choices: we can whine and cry, throw tantrums and demand justice for ourselves. It leads to bitterness, envy and depression. OR we can learn; we can have integrity of character. We can be gracious and thankful for what we have and what we’ve experienced. None of us have learned a thing in this life without losing. A team who never loses will soon find themselves unmotivated to win. A child that never fails at anything will never understand hard work, perseverance, diligence and patience. Our losses teach us how to sympathize and empathize with others. They teach us how to be humble. Losing well is what propels us to be people of character.
If you want to worry about losing something , worry about this: “And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?” ~ Mark 8:36
And to the rioters in Vancouver: Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. ~ Proverbs 16:18…..you might want to think of that before your buddy starts videoing you with his cell phone while you destroy someone else’s property.