I’m not a big gamer, but one of my favorite video games is Super Mario World. There are still times I will bring out my Super Nintendo and play that game. Even though I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve completed the game, I still enjoy the levels. All of them except for one. Tubular in Special World still makes me cringe just thinking about it. I still have nightmares of the first time I came across this level. I think I died over 100 times trying to beat it. I got so mad I had to turn off the game and go do something else for a while (and this happened a couple of times). It got to the point where I debated just quitting on the level. Since it’s in Special Word, I didn’t need to beat it to beat the game. But I am too stubborn for that. So I tried over and over. Each lost life made me feel more and more defeated.
Feeling defeated playing a video game isn’t the end of the world, but there have been times where I’ve felt defeated in life. Times where life’s circumstances had me feeling like I wasn’t going to be able to make it. Times where I thought I had everything figured out and then suddenly everything changes. My senior year of college I had a paid internship lined up for my classes. I had plans for how I was going to save the money and be the one college student who graduated and wasn’t broke. I found out a week before classes started that they were not going to be able to pay me. I was out of an internship and a job. A month (to the day) before I got married, the place where I worked downsized and I was let go. I went from entering marriage with a full-time job and benefits to piecing together part-time jobs to pay the bills.
I recently read through the book of Judges. The book is the same story told over and over but with different people. Israel would fall away from God and be captured by another people. Eventually they would cry out to God and He would bring them a judge and set them free. They would serve Him for a little while and then the cycle would repeat. I’ve read the book before but something different stood out to me this time. It was’t how foolish the Israelites were. It wasn’t wondering how they could keep making the same mistake over and over. What stood out was that when they cried out to God that was when He would rescue them. Judges 3:9 says, “But when the people of Israel cried out to the LORD for help, the LORD raised up a rescuer to save them.”
In all the times I mentioned before (yes even in playing Super Mario World), I can remember crying out to God for help. And in all of those times, He was able to rescue me. He was able to make a way when there seemed to be no way. I didn’t need to try to find my own way. I didn’t need to figure out how I could make things work. I just needed to cry out to God and trust in Him to be my deliverer.
until next time…
ps – Yes I did eventually beat Tubular.