Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Devotion 4.6.17

Forgiveness/Mercy - Psalm 25

This week at the Masters Tournament, one golfer faces his nemesis created last year on hole 12.  In 2015, Spieth went into the Masters and dominated from start to finish, so in 2016, when he led that Sunday, there were whispers of the next dominant player in golf.  When he got to the par-3 number 12, it was a matter of academics as to his impending win.  Go out with pars for the remaining six holes and it's yours.  Then as he teed up the ball and started the hole, the game dissolved before his eyes, and when he finished the hole, he lost four strokes with a seven (7) on a par three. 

Of course it haunts him, mainly because he's asked about it every day.  When he didn't make the cut in Houston, he was asked as he walked off the course about his game, about the Masters, and then, about number 12.  And in a couple of interviews, he's as much as said that.  Really, what more can I say about number 12 and the epic meltdown in my young golf life (23 years old I believe)?

So too for our lives.  Spieth's "number 12" wasn't a sin, but let's use it as analogous to sin.  That sin that haunts us.  That sin, our number 12, that is present in our minds that we, ourselves, won't let go away.  I've given my own "number 12s" a virtual 360, and where does it get me?  I know I'm not alone because I've sat in counsel with others who walk through their regrets in life.  It is as though that one action was the pin in the grenade responsible for the course our lives took.  When it comes to my own life, as it does your own, I cannot understand why I don't know and understand the grace that God offers, because my sin is a sin against God, who forgives that sin.

"The friendship of the LORD is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant.  My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.  Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. The troubles of my heart are enlarged; bring me out of my distresses.  Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins." (Psalm 25:14-18)

Hear the words of Christ as he talks to the adulteress who he has just saved from a stoning:  "Woman, where are they?  Has no one condemned you?" She said, "No one, Lord." and Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you; go and from now on sin no more."  Of course, we will sin, but we know that we take our sin to Christ who will not condemn us to the punishment we deserve, but He will forgive us.

Pray we hear those words of forgiveness.  Pray that we take in the knowledge of that forgiveness and forgive ourselves and others.  Pray for the Spirit to restore us and renew us each day.

Hope Men's Ministry

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