It takes a certain quality of a man to come to terms with being second. It isn’t easy to feel second best, because it feels like just not good enough; A taste away from being separated from the rest. Second best, is like first worst, for you were THIS close to the glory of it all. Being third isn’t that bad, you may even feel good about it, but when everything is on the line in the grand finals and you fall short, it feels sickening. It felt like yours! You could see it. I had to remember that feeling, the feeling of being second.
It’s kind of easy when everything goes easy. You press on, facing pressure maybe, working your butt off to stay ahead of things? Sure! But you’re in front, you’re ahead of the game, and things may be going smoothly. You may suffer fierce competition from your competitors, and so you fight on, and they fight back. They press you against the rocks, but u keep at it, swinging with all your might to prove why they call you “numero uno”.
The problem with being first is that being second just doesn’t work for you anymore. You climbed to the top, so how dare anyone else take your place? You fight to stay there, and you cleave to whatever keeps you in that spot. It may not even be your selfishness, but you simply desire to keep a standard that got you where you are in the first place. It might even be to the benefit of others as well.
Well, let’s just say that this wasn’t my case.
I had a serious problem with being first. It came subtly, as my attentions were being slowly drawn away from getting first and before I knew it, I got so far ahead that I found it hard to look back. I fell. Stumbled to the ground, not exactly sure how some object got in the way of my stride and tripped me, but the point was I was down. I was first, and though it hurt to fall, I for some reason or the other wanted to stay first, and so I ran. I ran and fell, and ran and fell, and ran and fell again. It’s not easy leading the way on your own, is it?
When I was second, however, it wasn’t that hard. I’d simply follow the path outlined for me, push on and the path was already determined. I was so focused on the one before me, that whatever distractions lay behind me were forsaken. I just wanted to get closer to Him. What I had forgotten, was that the person in first place is better than me. I am second best. I’m not good enough to take the lead. First place was only in view because first place let me see Him. God was in first place.
The moment I stopped to think about it, there He was, abreast with my pace. He wasn’t going to pass me unless I decided to let Him, which is weird, but in the end, I guess it isn’t quite that bad being second to the absolute best. As I run this race, let Jesus always be in front of me. I can’t win against Him anyway.