Things That Almost Were

In my senior year I lost the election for class president by one vote. 

A relay team I was on missed setting a state record by 0.1 seconds.

Mack Robinson broke the Olympic record for the 200 meters in the 1936 Berlin games. Unfortunately for him, so did Jesse Owens who beat him for 1st place. 

John Travolta turned down the starring role for the movie Forest Gump. 

King David, instead of going to war, decided to stay home. By direct result he committed adultery, got the woman pregnant, arranged her husband’s death, lost his newborn son, and ultimately wrecked his family’s future. A different decision would have prevented all that suffering. 

Some things in life would have turned out better if just one decision had been made differently. Or if the tiniest amount of energy, or a second of time, or a push of strength had been found. But such is the way of humans, we are not perfect. Sometimes, we are just unlucky.

From Ecclesiastes 9:11, “I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.”

We can do our best, work really hard and make every effort to succeed. But it doesn’t always turn out the way we hope. Time and chance happen to us all.

Life isn’t random. We aren’t steel balls crashing off the walls of a pinball machine. But neither is life lived with every moment predetermined and set in concrete. We have the mind God gave us, we have choice and responsibility. 

So don’t stop and don’t quit, and don’t give up. Hang in there. Keep trying. Maybe tomorrow is your day, maybe it’s your turn!

Lord help us! 

Shalom

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