Free Cell, Faith and Life

by: Larry Davies | Sep 2, 2010

On just about any computer with Windows you will find the card game, ‘FreeCell.’ I call it my stress reliever. Whenever I come to a stopping place at work, I play a quick game.’ When I’m faced with a tough situation, I’ll pause for another round. When I’m feeling good or just when I have a few spare minutes, I’ll whip out “FreeCell.” In fact, I’ll use almost any excuse to play. I love this game.

So, what is “FreeCell?” According to Microsoft, “The object is to move all the cards to the home area, using free cells as placeholders.” The rules then add a mysterious extra note: “It is believed (although not proven) that every game is winnable.” Really?

Maybe every game is winnable for a mathematical genius but for most of us regular folks — not!

  1. Sometimes a game is so easy, anyone could play: the cards just seem to fall into place.
  2. Sometimes you only have to look ahead and make a calculated move or two before winning.
  3. Sometimes you make a mistake or a really dumb move and end up defeating yourself.
  4. Sometimes despite your best efforts the game proves too challenging forcing you to quit.

 

Oftentimes, however you find yourself in a tight spot in the middle of the game. You are one or two moves away from disaster. So what now? At this point you have reached a turning point. The temptation is to give up. It would be easier to start over but if you quit, you lose. If you lose often enough, the statistics kept by the computer mark you as — loser.

 

But if you refuse to give up: stop for a moment, regroup your thoughts and then approach the game with a fresh dose of creativity you will often be rewarded with renewed insight so that a small correction leads to a series of good moves resulting in an immensely satisfying victory. If you refuse to quit and win enough turning points the statistics kept by the computer mark you as a winner.

 

Consistent winners in the game of ‘FreeCell’ refuse to quit in the midst of turning points, continue to explore other options and frequently turn potential disaster into sweet victory.

 

Ok, so what is the point? After all, “FreeCell” is just a game, isn’t it? Who really cares?

 

Paul says it well: “I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ Jesus saved me for and wants me to be. No, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.” (Phil. 3:12-14)

 
  • “I keep working toward that day –“
  • “No, I am still not all I should be –“
  • “Forgetting the past and looking forward –“
  • “I strain to reach the end of the race –“

Our life and faith at times behaves like a game of “FreeCell.”

 
  1. Sometimes everything seems so easy and our decisions always seem to turn out right.
  2. Sometimes we only need to make a few good choices to keep things going smoothly.
  3. Sometimes we make a mistake or do something really dumb that causes an obvious setback.
  4. Sometimes despite our best efforts everything seems too challenging, forcing us to start over.

Oftentimes, however we find ourselves in a tight spot and our temptation is to just quit and start over. We are one or two moves away from disaster so what now? At this point we have reached a turning point. We are tempted to give up. It would be easier to start over but if you quit — you lose. If you quit often enough, the statistics kept by your self-image will declare you a loser.

 

But if you refuse to give up: stop for a moment, regroup your thoughts, then approach your situation with a fresh dose of creativity you will often be rewarded with renewed insight so a small correction leads to a series of good moves resulting in an immensely satisfying victory. If you refuse to quit and win enough turning points the statistics kept by your self-image will declare you a winner.

 

The promise of Scripture is: “I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.”

 

Consistent winners within the journey of life and faith refuse to quit in the midst of turning points. They turn to God, continue to explore other options and frequently turn potential disaster into blessed ministry opportunities and even miracles.

 

Whether it’s ‘FreeCell’ or your life: Keep working toward that day. Forget the past and look forward. Strain to reach the end of the race because God through Jesus Christ is calling us up to heaven.

 

“FreeCell” anyone?

 


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