But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.
When Harold Russell’s hands were blown off in an accident, he sank into depression. One day Charley McGonegal, who had lost his own hands in war, told Russell, “For everything you have missed, you have gained something else.”
Russell rallied and went on to become an ambassador for the disabled. He won an Oscar for his role in the movie, The Best Years of Our Lives. He wrote, “My weakness… has turned out to be my greatest strength. I didn’t think so at the time it happened and I don’t think I’d ever willingly lose my hands, if I had it to do all over again. But having lost them I feel perhaps I have gained many fine things…. It is not what you have lost, but what you have left that counts.”1
When we look at past losses, it provides an opportunity to recalibrate for future service. The Lord can leverage our losses for ministry. Don’t give up. Your best years are now, and your best days are ahead.
For everything you have missed, you have gained something else.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
1Lillian Eichler Watson, Light From Many Lamps (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1951), 88-94.
Acts 16 – 17