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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]By Kelly Nix,
University Chaplain

I was young, single and skinny – three clues that ought to let you know this happened a long time ago.

The end of the term was approaching for our college RPG II programming class (okay, now you know this was a really, really long time ago), and my classmates and I had been working for weeks on the code that would represent our final projects. Mine, in particular, was not progressing very well. All the code was in place, but it just wasn’t working.

I talked one of my favorite professors into looking over my code to help me identify the problem, even though RPG wasn’t his main area of expertise. The night before the last day of the term – when all the projects were due – he stayed late and sat down with me, pulling up my program on one of our state-of-the-art IBM PC/XTs with a classy amber screen. He pored over the code for a few minutes, and then I heard him utter an exclamation of dismay.

He had accidentally, irretrievably deleted my program.

I didn’t have a backup.

While I assured him it was okay, on the inside I was terrified. Exam day is tomorrow. Whatever plans I might have had for that evening no longer existed – it was time to write a new program…from scratch.

I went back and started from the beginning. I don’t remember how long I worked, or if I even went to bed that night. But by morning I had new code. Nervously, I made my way to the computer lab and entered the program into our IBM System/36.

The program ran flawlessly.

My professor probably feels badly about his mistake to this day; but, in reality, he did me a huge favor. He made me start over again.

Suffering a major setback in life can be frustrating – at times, almost overwhelmingly so.

Joseph was the favored son of his father – and then he found himself a slave in Egypt. He spent 13 long years in prison; but when he finally emerged from “rewriting the code,” he rose to a position of power over his entire region of the world.

Moses was 40 years old and being groomed for the throne of Egypt when he suddenly found himself on the back side of the desert, tending sheep. It would take another 40 years to “write the code” again…but he emerged as the mighty leader of the nation of Israel.

Regardless of what 2016 looked like for you, it has forever rolled into the archives of history. Your victories are only memories. But the good news is, so are your failures.

This year is a brand new, God-given opportunity to rewrite the code. If you’ve been thinking of quitting, thrust that idea out of your mind. Take a deep breath, get a cup of coffee and sit down at the keyboard. You’ve got some code to write.

And, when it’s God’s time, the program will work beautifully!

“But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).