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Sore Losers Genesis 32:22-31

Sore Losers

In a culture where winning is everything, it’s hard to learn how to accept defeat with class. Maybe we can take a cue from Jacob, who discovered that painful struggles contain unexpected victories.

“Show me a good loser, and I’ll show you a loser.”

Those are the blunt words of Red Auerbach, coach of the Boston Celtics in the 1950s and 60s. They reflect the attitude afoot today that holds that anything less than being top dog is worthless.

Worthless. That’s right. As worthless as a wicker bedpan, to quote Drew Carey. Useless as a chocolate teapot, as the Brits say. As useless as a camera without film, a bike without wheels, a bucket without a bottom, a knife without a blade, a brush for a bald guy, a screen door on a submarine, a saddle without a horse, a milk bucket under a bull.


Vince Lombardi, the NFL’s all-time winningest coach, said, “If you can accept losing, you can’t win.” A Nike ad that ran during the 1996 Summer Olympics dumped all over second-place winners when it proclaimed, “You don’t win silver; you lose gold.”

College World Series Baseball last summer (2004) provides a stark example. After the...

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