But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ. Philippians 3:7-8
Shakespeare captures part of this idea in these lines: “But whate’er I be, nor I, nor any man that but man is, with nothing shall be pleased till he be eased with being nothing.”
In a Peanuts comic strip Charlie Brown is complaining about “another ball game lost, good grief.” Lucy says “Look at it this way Charlie Brown, we learn more from losing than we do from winning.” He responds with his mouth wide open “THAT MAKES ME THE SMARTEST PERSON IN THE WORLD”.
In the world of faith, the things we count for loss are exchanged for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus! Like receiving beauty for ashes as Isaiah 61:3 says.