Links Daily Devotional

All Ears

“But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and you will walk in all the way which I command you, that it may be well with you.’” (Jeremiah 7:23, NASB)

Jack Nicklaus wrote that playing excellent golf requires only three things: hit the ball well, manage the course, and manage yourself. It is no secret that most of us who play spend more time working on the first of those three and perhaps the least amount of time working on the third. That’s because we think we know how to manage ourselves, and we don’t think we know how to hit a golf ball well.

In my experience both of those beliefs are incorrect. No, you can’t putt like Faxon or hit your irons like Dufner. But you hit good shots, which means you can hit more good shots. How? Trust the swing you have for two weeks. During that time, swing a club 100 times a day. Hit balls if you can, but don’t if you can’t. You’ll find out you’re better than you think you are.

And here’s a way to instantly help you manage yourself better on the course: pretend you have a professional caddie. Of course the final decision on hitting a shot you can only make 10 percent of the time is still yours, but a good caddie—even a pretend one—will try to talk you into doing the right thing.

In life we need to turn that arrangement around. We need God, who is far from pretend, managing our game and we need to agree with him every time. If a pro caddie can improve your game with wise counsel, just imagine what God can do for your life.

There are two challenges with this. The first is that most of us are not skilled at listening to God’s direction; the second is that what we do hear from God doesn’t seem like it will work as well as what we have in mind, and we dismiss it. Since he created mankind, God has guided us with unparalleled wisdom and love, and from very early on we have gone our own way.

The beautiful promise in today’s verse is followed by this sad note: “Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but walked in their own counsels and in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward and not forward.” Failing to follow the counsel of a great caddie can make your game go backward. Failing to obey God is guaranteed to have the same negative result in your life.

Stop trying to manage yourself. “Incline your ear” to God, and he will take you forward in amazing ways!

Lewis Greer
November 14, 2013
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