In 1964, Jim Marshall, while playing for the Minnesota Vikings football team against the San Francisco 49er’s recovered a fumble and ran 66 yards in the wrong direction. After believing he had scored a touchdown for the Vikings, he threw the ball away which went out of bounds. This resulted in no score for his team, but a 2 point safety for the opposing team. This was almost a re-enactment of Roy Riegels wrong way run during the 1929 Rose Bowl game. My oldest son did almost the same thing when he was about 10. In a soccer game, after driving the ball over half the length of the field in the wrong direction, his goal scoring kick was thankfully stopped by his own team’s goalie and no score for the opposing team.
Sometimes, we can put all our effort and expertise in doing something that seems so right. We know what we are doing at the time, yet our efforts can be very misdirected and we are unable to see we are going in the wrong direction. Have you ever been a ‘Wrong Way Jones’? If you are now in that situation, it is time to stop and turn around before you are tackled.
God loves you. The Holy Spirit is with you and will help you turn your life around. You don’t have to continue running the wrong way or be alone when you try to turn your life around. It starts with a prayer. Go to your knees and ask God in obedient prayer to help you. HE will hear you.
” If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV
WHEN YOU LEFT WORK YESTERDAY, DID YOU TELL YOUR BOSS YOU WOULD BE AT WORK TODAY AS YOU ARE SCHEDULED? PROBABLY NOT, SINCE YOUR ATTENDANCE IS AN UNDERSTOOD PROMISE. OUR MOST SIMPLE COMMITMENTS SHOULD BE ABSOLUTE PROMISES.
HAVE YOU EVER CALLED SOMEONE, LEFT A MESSAGE AND THEY NEVER RETURNED YOUR CALL? MAYBE, YOU SENT A LETTER OR AN EMAIL THAT IS STILL UNANSWERED. WE ARE LEFT IN THE DARK AS TO WHY OUR CONTACT HAS GONE UNANSWERED.
BY NOT RESPONDING WE MAY BE SENDING A MESSAGE TO THE CALLER THAT THEY ARE NOT IMPORTANT ENOUGH, THEIR MESSAGE IS UNWORTHY OF A RESPONSE, OR THAT WE SIMPLY DO NOT CARE. ARE WE THAT SELFISH, UNCARING OR BUSY?
GOD CARES. GOD ALWAYS HAS TIME FOR US. THROUGH OUT HIS WORD HIS PROMISES ARE ABSOLUTES. GOD’S WORD IS A PROMISE, NOT “I MAY” OR “I MIGHT” AND NEVER “I DON’T CARE”. THROUGHOUT SCRIPTURE GOD SAYS; “I AM”, “I WILL” OR “I SHALL”…ALL ABSOLUTE PROMISES. EVEN GOD’S INSTRUCTIONS TO US ARE DEFINITE; “GO…”, “I COMMAND…”, “YOU SHALL…”, “THOU SHALL NOT…”. WHEN GOD COMMUNICATES, IT REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ACTION. GOD DOES NOT TELL US; “WHEN YOU HAVE TIME, DO THIS OR THAT”.
SHOULDN’T WE MIRROR GOD’S ACTIONS? NEXT TIME SOMEONE REACHES OUT TO YOU, RESPOND TO THEM IMMEDIATELY. DON’T SEND THE MESSAGE OF SILENCE. THEY MAY HEAR THE SILENCE AS THEY ARE UNWORTHY OF A RESPONSE OR THEY ARE UNIMPORTANT. LET OTHERS KNOW YOU CARE. GOD CARES.
EVERYONE IS IMPORTANT TO GOD….THAT IS WHY HE CREATED US!
“THE LORD IS FAITHFUL TO ALL HIS PROMISES AND LOVING TOWARD ALL HE HAS MADE.” PSALM 145: 13b
WE SEE A LOT OF STRANGE THINGS IN OUR LIVES, BUT ONE THING I HAVE NEVER SEEN IS A CASKET TOWING A U-HAUL TRAILER. I HAVE HEARD THIS PHRASE ATTRIBUTED TO A FAMOUS PREACHER, CHARLES SWINDOLL.
OF ALL WE HAVE COLLECTED HERE ON EARTH, NONE OF IT CAN BE TAKEN TO HEAVEN WITH US. TOO MANY OF US ‘ACCUMULATE’ POSSESSIONS. SOMETIMES THE COLLECTION GOES TOO FAR. WE THINK WE NEED THIS OR WE HAVE TO HAVE THAT. WE CONVINCE OURSELVES WE NEED A BIGGER HOUSE, A NEWER CAR, MORE JEWELRY, MORE MONEY, FAME… DO WE REALLY? WHEN DOES THE ‘NEED TO HAVE’ TURN INTO IDOL WORSHIP? HOW OFTEN DO WE FEEL GETTING IS BETTER THAN GIVING.
GOD CERTAINLY WANTS US TO ENJOY OUR LIVES ON THIS EARTH. THE BIBLE TELLS US OF MANY OF GOD’S FAITHFUL WHO WERE ALSO WEALTHY. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH WEALTH…IF…WE BALANCE IT CAREFULLY. ARE WE BEING GOOD STEWARDS OF ALL GOD HAS ALLOWED US TO POSSESS? DO WE SHARE OUR TALENTS, TIME AND MONEY WITH THOSE WHO ARE IN NEED OF THEM? ARE WE HONORING GOD WITH ALL HE HAS ALLOWED US TO HAVE?
WE CAN’T HOOK UP THE U-HAUL WHEN GOD CALLS US HOME.
“ALL WHO MAKE IDOLS ARE NOTHING, AND THE THINGS THEY TREASURE ARE WORTHLESS. THOSE WHO WOULD SPEAK UP FOR THEM ARE BLIND; THEY ARE IGNORANT, TO THEIR OWN SHAME.” ISAIAH 44:9 NIV
I SAT IN THE AUDIENCE ALONG WITH SEVERAL HUNDRED OTHERS, LISTENING AND LEARNING. THE PRESENTER TOLD A STORY OF A YOUNG MAN SENT INTO A LUMBER YARD TO BUY MATERIALS. HE TOLD THE SALESMAN HE NEEDED 4X2s. THE SALESMAN ASKED IF HE WAS SURE, THAT THE LUMBER IS NORMALLY REFERRED TO AS 2X4s. THE YOUNG MAN RAN BACK TO OTHERS WAITING IN THEIR TRUCK. WHEN HE CAME BACK, HE TOLD THE SALESMAN THAT IN FACT HE DID NEED 2X4s NOT 4X2s.
THE SALESMAN ASKED HIM HOW LONG HE NEEDED THEM. THE YOUNG MAN REPLIED; “OH, WE NEED THEM FOR A VERY LONG TIME. WE ARE GOING TO BUILD A HOUSE.” AS WE ALL CHUCKLED, I WAS REMINDED OF HOW WE NEED JESUS FOR ‘A VERY LONG TIME’. ETERNITY IS ‘A VERY LONG TIME’.
SOMETIMES, WE TREAT OUR FAITH AND THE ETERNAL BLESSING GOD WILL FREELY GIVE TO US WITH LITTLE RESPECT. WE WRAP OURSELVES UP IN LIFE AND FORGET WHAT WE SHOULD BE DOING. ETERNITY IS ‘A VERY LONG TIME’. ARE YOU PREPARING YOURSELF TODAY TO SPEND ETERNITY IN HEAVEN OR IN HELL FOR ‘A VERY LONG TIME’?
“FOR GOD SO LOVED HE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONE AND ONLY SON, THAT WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHALL NOT PERISH BUT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE.” JOHN 3:16 NIV