Some of us are risk takers. Some of us, well, not so much! We most often like things to be fairly predictable, nicely connectible, generally controllable. With that, we imagine we’ve got the upper hand, that life will keep playing as we’ve nicely organized it and outlined it. The writer of Ecclesiastes 9 though had another opinion.
He said, “I have observed something else in this world of ours. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise are often poor, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being at the right place at the right time.”
The point is well taken, though I’m not convinced it is the whole message. Chance does indeed happen to us all…we win unexpectedly, we lose for no real reason, we fall when we thought we were on the rise and stand tall when the greatest doubts prevailed. We’re adept at second chances and third and fourth chances as well. If we’re still in the game of life and still willing to play then we have the option of sitting it out and letting things happen as they may, or we have the opportunity to embrace change, take chances, revise our thoughts and renew our direction. We may have to slip out of our comfort zone to do all that, but it can be done. After all, coming in first, isn’t the only way to win a race and sometimes being a great warrior is about knowing how to pick your battles.
If we’re getting out of bed every morning, we’re suiting up, putting our race number on our backs and heading out the door. That’s what we do, we walk, jog, breathe in, breathe out…finding our pace and establishing our place in the world. We do that every day whether we realize it or not. Then, once the race we’ve chosen to run in begins we also find ourselves in the role of warriors…armed to make a difference, to have an impact in one way or another.
No matter who you are or where you are in life, you’re still part of the race, educated, smart, skilled at what you do and ready to take another chance on what may come your way today. You get another chance every time you make an effort, every time you seize an opportunity, every time you’re willing to go after your dreams. It’s not always easy to run another race or easy to fight one more battle, or try one more time to find the right place to be or the right person to love, but you can do it. The God of Second chances, is the one with the flag and He’s starting the race over and over just so you can join in at the right time. The good news is that He’ll see you get to the finish line and even give you a gold crown for all your efforts. Now that sounds like a win, doesn’t it?
If you’re questioning whether to try again, or give an idea another chance, or whether today’s the day to heal a friendship or thank someone who sees all your potential, then go ahead and do it now. Time and chance may happen to us all, but we have some options for initiating what we want. Go on, give yourself another chance!