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War on My Friends!

My Dearest Warriors,

As many of you know, my family is passionate about sports. Although we follow many sports our top two favorites are without a doubt, tennis and futbol (soccer). There has been a surge of energy throughout the house these past few weeks as we follow Wimbledon (tennis championship), the women’s World Cup, and COPA America (an international soccer championship held every three years). It is convicting to watch as these athletes showcase their training and stamina for all to see. Two tennis matches in particular have truly captured my attention this past week.

The first is a match I watched played by Neomi Osaka. She became very well known after beating Serena Williams. Since then, she has won other championships and held the number two seed in the world. She and her opponent had played a week earlier and she had lost, yet despite this, Osaka still had the upper hand with her world ranking and experience. It was clear very early on in the match though, that Osaka’s confidence was not there: She missed shots that usually came easily for her, her shoulders were slumped, and her facial expressions tense. Slowly but surely, her lack of confidence and her anxiety, began to affect her game. Her opponent also picked up on this, took advantage of the opportunity, and won the match.

I will juxtapose this with another match played by Coco Gauff. She played Venus Williams earlier this week. It was her first time qualifying for a major grand slam. At 15 she also became the youngest to play in the tournament since 1992. Venus Williams, her opponent, has won 7 grand slams and is a well known veteran. Based on numbers it seemed the match was already determined. Coco Gauff had a different outline. Immediately she had a presence about her. She played every point with such power and it was very clear that she came to play. And play she did; she won the match against Venus Williams making history. Two matches; two different outcomes.

Coco’s example was a reminder to me of how easy it is for us to get lost in our feelings or to be intimidated by a situation in front of us, so much so, that we break under pressure reacting to the situation rather than standing our ground and facing it. Scripture bleeds with examples of God’s servants being faced with impossible dangers and tasks: David and Goliath, Moses with the red sea in front of him and the Isrealite army behind him, Elijah the prophet facing off with the prophets of Baal, and so many others. In each account we learn that when we rely on the truth within us, whatever lies before us, can be defeated. I leave you with the words of our Father as He encouraged Joshua before he faced an army far more powerful and larger than his own. War on friends and continue to fight the good fight.

“Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. 3 I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 4 Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Mediterranean Sea in the west. 5 No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. 6 Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.” Joshua 1: 2-6

Abundantly With Love,

The Anonymous Wife

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