I bounced up to the podium in the conference room at last week’s Toastmasters meeting.

“Get lost!” I announced.

“I hope you get lost.”

I launched into a story about getting lost in a corn maze at a pumpkin patch in October. I delivered the speech, leaning into lyric poetry, sure I was on a roll.

“The sun finger-painted dappled patches of light across acres and acres of pumpkins on Sauvie’s Island,” I shared.  “We enjoyed munchy, crunchy apples and tasty apple cider . . . we need to surrender our desire to live our dreams on our own, in crazy mazes that feel like hazings.”

I congratulated myself for delivering what I considered a creative, high-energy speech.

At the end of the meeting, the winners were announced.

Out of five contestants, I came in . . .  last..Forget crushing it. I felt crushed.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t have my sights set on a series of Toastmasters trophies. But I felt that the practice would help me refine my speech. But last?

No high fives. No smiles. No accolades.

At the end of the meeting, I scooped up my things and slipped out the door.

Tigger bounced in. Eeyore shuffled out.

I drove downtown to meet with a coaching client. Wind and cold rain slashed at me as I scurried across a busy downtown street without my coat—that I had left at home. Aargh!

“No,” I spoke to my thoughts. “I refuse a victim mentality.”

I drew in a deep breath and shoved aside frustration and disappointment. Then I did the only thing I knew: I worshiped my way out of that space. I belted, “I Exalt Thee,” as I walked to the restaurant.

The words and the music swelled up from deep inside my spirit. I imagined that they grew wings and I even lifted my head to see them rise.

The cold rain pelted my face but I didn’t care. Co-Co was with me and I knew it. So did He.

Why worship?

– By worshiping, I actively took captive every thought and aggressively made them obedient to Christ.  The object of the game here: to move as quickly from victim mentality to overcomer stance with my thoughts. Worship defined victory. Victory defined worship.

– By worshiping, I shifted the atmosphere. Was anyone else praising Jesus aloud on that block? Not that I could tell. But one voice was all it took to bring the resonant frequency of that city sector waves in rhythm with the sound of heaven.

– By worshiping, I told the devil I was doing things on my terms—heaven’s terms—not his. Take that!

I’m grateful for the experience to recalibrate and refocus. I am ready to surge forward with Co-Co’s guidance and wisdom.

I choose to worship God in Spirit and in truth, declaring His presence as my guiding force.

“God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:24).

Friend, what are other ways you’ve overcome defeat?

Rise to freedom!


Lynn (and Co-Co)