Victim vs. Victor
Now this I know: The Lord gives victory to his anointed. He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary with the victorious power of his right hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. –Psalm 20:6,7
In the course of my career thus far, I have read and heard some incredibly tragic personal stories. It never ceases to boggle my mind how some have endured and survived so much. It’s also amazing to watch people that have overcome tragedy versus those that remain emotionally stuck at the time the tragedy occurred. Some become victors, others remain victims.
Scripture shows us consistently that the Lord gives us victory over our enemies. How then, can we explain it when something tragic happens to us? I would propose this: bad things happen as part of living in this broken world and no one is immune to that. Perhaps our victory lies not in never experiencing bad things, but in how we respond to those events. Perhaps there are times when the victory the Lord gives us lies in the healing process. I suspect it has to do with our mentality toward that event and ourselves. After tragedy, there is a time for mourning and anger and questioning as we process the event and try to heal. But if we cannot move past that phase at some point, we become stuck in a victim mentality. The enemy would have us stay in bondage to that type of mentality, but the Lord promises us victory over our enemies. Perhaps our victory lies in being able to see ourselves as able to thrive and enjoy life after the event, rather than forever haunted and shackled by it. Maybe there comes a point in our healing where we decide we’re not going to allow the tragedy to have power over our present and future any longer. Does that mean we forget what happened? Of course not. But it might mean we refuse to live in fear…or shame…or bitterness…or remorse. It might mean we refuse to be defined by that event, but rather be defined by who God says we are: His children, bought with a price, loved beyond measure, here for a purpose.
If you are recovering from a loss, tragedy or trauma, be encouraged that God wants to help you heal and discover all the good plans He has for your victorious future.