Of course, I’d say both are important! The difference is that winning the battle really isn’t in our hands. We can’t control the results of what we do. But, no matter what…we CAN (and we must) choose to fight.
What do you think? Have you ever found personal victory in the midst of loss? Would you be willing to share your experiences?
So many times in life—and in the pro-life battle—do we focus on winning; do we believe we will win, and center our hopes on that? Perhaps our hope should be on Jesus alone, the Author and Finisher of our faith. He is the Author—He writes the story, not us. And He finishes the race, not us. And yet, we are certainly called to run the race with endurance. Another concept to ponder is that we do not live by our faith alone, but by “the faith of the Son of God Who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (See Hebrews 12:1-2 and Galatians 2:20.)
Many times, we start well, but do we finish well? Do we carry out our charge until the very end? We have to give our heart’s passion and our life’s dreams over to the only One Who can finish well…and perhaps it is this realization alone that allows us to truly finish. Otherwise, there will always be work left undone. It is by allowing Him to be the Author and Finisher that we hear the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter now into thy rest.”
Remember, too, that a servant often does the small things—the details—letting his master weave it into the finished project. I am reminded of a short poem my mother wrote down as a young woman: “God—He is He, and I, I am only I.” How profound…
Of course, Christ has already won the victory…we only have yet to see it. But perhaps our focus should be on the choice to fight the battle, not the hope to win it. We do not lose that hope, but it is not our focus. How true that we should do what is right, simply because it is right. Love allows us to fight a battle and lose. The order of faith, hope, and love—love is truly the end. (I Corinthians 13) It puts self away.
It is when we lose ourselves and can say with King Arthur of Camelot, “There is no pride left in me” that we can fight no matter how many times we lose. This is because we do it for love, not for hope or faith, and not for victory. Faith allows us to believe that our Lord wins in the end; hope gives us that glimmer of our dream when we become weary (for we always know victory is somewhere around the corner); but faith allows us to keep on keeping on regardless of the visual outcome we see. Time and time again. Time and time again.
My life is but a weaving between my God and me,
I do not choose the colors He worketh steadily
Oft’times He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride
Forgets He sees the upper, and I the underside.
Not till the loom is silent and shuttles cease to fly
Will God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful in the Skillful Weaver’s Hand
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned.
by Benjamine Malachi Franklin
Footnote: Thanks goes to my Pastor, John Smith and the Dean of my college, Roger Magnuson for some of the thoughts here.