Dear Compass Checkers,
I don’t know how you’ll answer this question, but my answer is a resounding “yes.” I have felt this way many times in my life. I’ve had to deal with my emotions in this regard. So what about you? First, it’s okay to say “yes” to this question, and if you do, now we need to know how to deal with this feeling because many of us may feel this way at some point in our lives.
First—let’s get to the point:
You are not a loser!
I know some of our CC readers could say, “Well, you don’t know me.” While it’s true I don’t know most of you personally, we all have this in common: We are human beings, and to be human is to doubt ourselves and to have our share of bad days. Sometimes the world comes crashing in on us.
As I write this column, I’ve had a very tough week so far, and it’s only Wednesday evening. But that’s okay, I have prayed about the multiple situations that are facing me this week, and I have turned them over to God. I am not going to worry about them since I have faith in God to take care of things. I can’t lose if I do this. Yes, I need to do my part, but I am not going to try to solve these challenges by myself. And if I do try to do things by myself, then I will fail!
This is the key: If we turn our lives over to God (this means we have to step out of the way and stop trying to work things out ourselves), and if we follow God, then we are on the right track. God answers our prayers since He loves us and we seek Him in our lives.
Notice God’s love in Matthew 10:29-31 Matthew 10:29-31  Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.
 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
 Fear you not therefore, you are of more value than many sparrows.
American King James Version×(New International Version): “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
CC readers, God knows the number of hairs on your head—amazing! God the Father and Jesus Christ His Son want to make sure you do not fail in your lives. He has a plan for you now as a teen and into your adult years. Frankly, His plan for you goes into eternity, and that is a long time indeed!
Do you pray about your challenges in life? When you feel like a failure, do you stop doing things by yourself and really pray to God, then seek His help and His solutions for your fears and problems? If you do, then you are on the path of not failing. Remember, our goals should be God’s goals. God reminds us of this in Isaiah 55:8 Isaiah 55:8For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, said the LORD.
American King James Version×: “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways.” So our overall goal is to yield to God to make His thoughts our thoughts. God in us (His Holy Spirit either working with us before baptism or in us after baptism—John 14:17 John 14:17Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sees him not, neither knows him: but you know him; for he dwells with you, and shall be in you.
American King James Version×) gives us the success, the encouragement and His mindset to overcome our fears and discouragements. This is because God loves us and intervenes for us as we seek Him in our lives.
Here is a reminder that our goals and our plans should be according to what pleases God: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 6:33-34 Matthew 6:33-34  But seek you first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.
 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient to the day is the evil thereof.
American King James Version×, NIV).
We cannot really be losers if we turn our lives over to God
I’ve had to learn this, or actually re-learn this, many times. My human nature takes over sometimes and I think I can do it all. It is then I fail. This has been, and still is, a big lesson for me: God has never let me down, and He does not consider me to be a loser, as long as I seek Him in my life and stay faithful to Him. But have I let God down in my life? Yes, many times. Yet, when I repent and turn things over to God, He mercifully directs me to accomplish His will.
I also want to add—ask God in prayer to give you a “merry heart.” A crushed spirit or the feeling of being a failure “dries the bones” or saps a person’s strength. Notice this in Proverbs 17:22 Proverbs 17:22A merry heart does good like a medicine: but a broken spirit dries the bones.
American King James Version×(NIV): “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
None of us is perfect—we sometimes get messy attitudes. But since Jesus Christ was on this earth as a human being, He understands us to our core, and He can intervene on our behalf to His Father. What an incredible blessing and miracle this is for all of us! Notice this in Hebrews 4:15-16 Hebrews 4:15-16  For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
American King James Version×(NIV): “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
In 2 Timothy 1:7 2 Timothy 1:7For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
American King James Version×we read that God’s Holy Spirit does not give us a spirit of fear: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” Don’t hesitate to reach out to God and ask for His power, His love and a sound mind.
When we sincerely seek God in prayer and let Him direct us by obeying Him, He will never let us truly fail. We may go through some bumps and bruises in life, but God is our shield and our hope. King David wrote about this: “Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield . . . Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, just as we hope in You” (Psalms 33:20 Psalms 33:20Our soul waits for the LORD: he is our help and our shield.
American King James Version×, Psalms 33:22 Psalms 33:22Let your mercy, O LORD, be on us, according as we hope in you.
American King James Version×).
We have another great issue of Compass Check for your reading enjoyment. Enjoy!
Until next time, your camp friend,
Steve Nutzman, editor | firstname.lastname@example.org