Blessed to be Broken

God's not finished with me yet!

Reduced

on March 10, 2022

One of my favorite movies is Invincible. A true rags to riches story based on NFL player Vince Papale. Too bad the team he played for was the Philadelphia Eagles. While I love the movie, I don’t love the Eagles. However, my favorite team is represented in the movie. But, that’s another story for another time.

Prior to Vince making the team, he was pretty much down on his luck in all areas of his life. He lost his teaching job. His wife left him and took everything. And well, he was pretty much what country music songs used to represent back in the day. You know those old twangy, I lost everything blues songs. But, his wife was kind enough to leave him this note:

“Vince
You’ll never go anywhere
You’ll never make any money
and you’ll never make a name for yourself.”

Nice, uplifting note, right? Not! Everything in that note was meant to reduce his existence. She was unhappy with her current life situation and took it out on him.

Instead of letting that awful note define him, he let it do just the opposite. It drove him to excel. In fact, he kept that note until it no longer served its purpose and then he ripped it to shreds.

After Vince was selected to try out for the team, Coach Dick Vermeil gave this speech to the players:

“Gentlemen, you’re about to hear me say a word you’ll never hear me say again… lose. It means to fail. It means to be reduced, to surrender, to relinquish. Over the years this team has surrendered. It’s been reduced. This team has failed. No more. No more. Starting today we are on a path toward winning and that’s gonna require a lot more work and sacrifice than many of you are used to ”.

The word ”reduced” has always stood out to me from that speech. Maybe because there’s always someone standing at the ready to try and make someone feel less than in an effort to make themselves feel more powerful.

Let’s look at what the definition of reduced is: “Bring someone or something to (a lower or weaker state, condition, or role).”

More than likely you’ve been a victim or know someone who’s been a victim to being reduced by a bully. It’s a heart wrenching thing to experience. Every time we put our worth in the hands of people and let them define who we are, we set ourselves up for heartbreak.

Let me ask you a question? What or who are you placing your worth in? Is it the things of this world? Money, job title, house, car, etc? The Bible warns us not to place our worth in our earthly treasures.

““Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy,and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew 6:19-21 (NLT)

In the blink of an eye the things we place our value in, can be taken away.

The same goes when we place our worth in others. Because we’re all flawed, we see each other with flawed eyes. And more often than not, we’re looking at someone’s outward appearance. But God doesn’t look at us the way we look at each other. He looks at our heart:

“But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.””

1 Samuel 16:7 (NIV)

That’s why it’s important we guard our hearts:

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”

Proverbs 4:23 (NIV)

Vince could’ve allowed that note to reduce his existence. But, he rose above it and set his sights on the goals set before him. His wife neither created him or had good plans for him or his future.

In the end, Vince went places, he made lots of money, and he made a name for himself. All opposites of what his wife tried to speak over him. Because she was not the author of Vince’s story.

Your story belongs to no one else. Don’t let anyone write the chapters God has for you. He’s the only One who knows exactly what you need and He’s the only One who loves you with an everlasting love. And He actually keeps His promises. Hallelujah!

Have an amazing day!



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