September 2, 2011

Are You Losing Or Are You A Loser?

We can all think of teams, organizations, & even churches that can never quite get it together. Even when they have the right resources, the right people, & the right timing, they somehow manage to blow it. At the same time, we can also think of groups who have a less than glowing history of success, but then all of a sudden they make the turnaround & find success. Look at the Boston Red Sox. They've had talent, money, & opportunities to succeed, but for generations they found ways to lose, sometimes to obviously inferior opponents. Now however, they are one of the powerhouses of baseball & have won more championships in the last 10 years than they had in 80 years prior to that.

So what's the difference between losing & being a loser? Is it as simple as your "record"? I don't think so. I think it's a little more subtle. I think the difference is your perspective on losing because we're all going to lose, & there's at least a decent chance we'll have as many or more defeats as victories.

The Difference Between Losing & Being A Loser
Is Determined By Whether You Endure Losing Or Tolerate It.

When you endure losing, you're still actively pursuing the win. You still expect to win, & as a result you still have a chance to taste victory. However, if you, your team, & your "fans" begin to tolerate losing. The chances of real victory are virtually erased. Just like the football team who thinks they're going to lose before they even put on their pads, organizations & ministries who simply tolerate their losing as "that's just the way things are" might as well not even show up because the end has pretty much been decided.

I really think it's this subtle difference in how we view losing that makes us a loser or not. When we as ministry leaders think that we just cannot break through a certain barrier, then we probably won't. When a business internally admits that growth just can't happen because "we've never been able to do that before", then they're right; growth won't happen.

If you have any influence with a team, organization, or ministry, challenge those you work with to endure the losses, learn from them, & press on toward the victory. The minute you tolerate losing, you've resigned yourself to the fact that neither you nor God can do great things through your leadership.

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