Why the Miss Universe Fiasco Hits Home

They say you can’t lose something you never had. That is, unless Steve Harvey reads the card wrong.

I sat here with my eyebrows to the sky, in disbelief, as I watched the video clip of Steve Harvey announcing the wrong 2015 Miss Universe, then attempting to correct himself. It was so sad/awkward/funny that I realized a few things while I was thinking about it. This situation hits home.

We’ve all been in Miss Colombia’s shoes, haven’t we? We thought we had it, and then it got taken away from us. Shame came, and embarrassment. We had to stand there awkwardly and try to be happy for somebody else. It’s the job you didn’t get but so-and-so got, and the guy you had a crush on that actually asked your friend out. I can’t imagine how many times I’ve felt like the first runner up, the next best thing, the salutatorian, the silver medal. Second-best sometimes feels like dead last. And so we cringe as we watch the crown being removed from Miss Colombia’s head. We cringe because we’ve been there.

And Miss Philippines also shows us a familiar situation. How many times have we been hesitant to be happy, because of fear and confusion, or maybe even out of courtesy for others? She’s never gonna get that moment back. She was announced Miss Universe and she hesitated. She smiled but fear was visible. She didn’t get to jump up and down and have the crowd clap just for her. The moment, her moment, was ruined. I sometimes get scared that this will happen to me. What if my most precious moments are somehow ruined? What if I hesitate instead of enjoying them? Let nothing hinder your joy.

There are lots of Steve Harveys in the world, you know. There are people who make mistakes and cause confusion. They’re given platforms and microphones, and they say the wrong stuff. It messes people up. They sometimes preach the opposite of the truth, in loud, confident voices. And people are misled. I pray that if you ever got misled, that the truth would rise up in your heart and your mind and would begin to lead you. Question the statements that rule your life. Are they true? Where did you learn them? Who said them? Does God agree?

Last but not least, we’ve all been Steve Harvey making the big mistake. We’ve said words that we wish we could grab from the air and stop from reaching any ears. We’ve stood loud and proud, and wrong. Painfully wrong. And it stinks to be wrong. Nobody enjoys it. I hope you learn to forgive yourself, and to forgive others. I hope you release yourself as quickly as you would release someone who made a genuine mistake. If you’re the type to beat yourself up, so am I. But friend, we need to stop it. We need to stop because we are setting an example to others when they need to forgive themselves. Grace flows this way too, perfectly.

All in all, I saw an opportunity to experience growth in that disaster. I have so been there, and haven’t we all? I pray for those who are hurting and angry, for healing in their hearts and release of the repeating thoughts in their minds. I pray for grace to abound in the little fiascoes of our lives.

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