by Lisa Easterling

“We fight from a place of victory.” Craig Altman

I gasped, perhaps a little too audibly, the day our pastor uttered those words during a message. It isn’t like it’s a new concept; I’ve known for a long time that the battle is already won, that Christ won the victory on Calvary, the Gospel story. This was not news to me.

So why it hit me so directly that morning I’m not sure. My mind immediately jumped that thought from the expanse of the brightly-lit auditorium across the vista of my life, my day, my goals, my fears, my sphere of influence, my areas of ministry.

When I landed on my ministry to minister to women who are working through pain to healing and hope, I stopped for a while to ponder the application. What if this is the key to what we are all doing here, lifting one another up as daughters of God? What if we approached the pain of our past, the tasks of our present, and the outlook of our future, from a standpoint of victory? What would change?

Pastor Craig shared a story about how he had once recorded the football game of his favorite college team, and when he went to watch it he accidentally viewed the end of the recording showing the final score with his team the victor. Even though he was angry to have the ending spoiled, he went on to watch the game anyway. He said the entire viewing experience was transformed. Why? Because he already knew his team had won. Fumbles didn’truffle him. Interceptions didn’t rile him. Being down by a few points at any point didn’t unnerve him, because he kept recalling the outcome.

It isn’t unusual for me to come away from our pastor’s messages enlightened and inspired, but that day was extra special for me. My heart for reaching out to others in love and grace was highlighted. And I am blessed to pass along this reminder to you, dear friend, that you may have a renewed joy and hope in what we are doing here, all of us together.

When we work through our pain, we know we will reach healing.When we cry out to God in the pages of our journals, we can look ahead and see our Savior on the Throne and know it’s all going to be all right in the end.

I don’t normally like to have the ending of a book or movie spoiled—unless I know it’s going to be a bad ending. As long as I know it ends well, I am content. How much more should that apply to the way I live my life, word my stories, share my heart, if I know that it isn’t just a medal that awaits me in the end, but the Crown of Life? How much more should it mean to all of us?

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