Links Daily Devotional

The Beginning and the End

We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. (1 Corinthians 15:51-52, NIV)

Are you still stunned?

Stunned that Rory McIlroy stormed to the brink of the lead, then got outdone in the Most Amazing Charge category by both Adam Scott and Louis Oosthuizen?

Stunned that Branden Grace, with less than driver, sent his tee shot against the fence, out of bounds at sixteen?

Stunned that, with a three-shot lead, Jordan Spieth hit a shot as ugly as we could ever imagine at seventeen?

Stunned that—oh, do we have to think again about what we watched Dustin Johnson endure at eighteen?

All multi-hour lead-in long, we were told on Sunday that the course had been set up to produce any variety of results on the closing holes. Variety, indeed.

But let’s go here for a moment: to the beginning. For it was in the beginning, on the very first hole, where Jordan Spieth three-putted from 17 feet. Running the first putt several feet by, he pulled the follow-up. That is, what runner-up Dustin Johnson did at the end of the day, champion Jordan Spieth did at the beginning.

Spieth’s three-putt was the first of countless stops throughout the extended afternoon. Stops when the tournament appeared over—including Johnson’s flawless front nine and the Spieth-Grace three-shot swing at sixteen. And stops when the tournament was back on—from Johnson’s bogey binge at ten, eleven, and thirteen, to the Spieth-Oosthuizen three-shot swing at seventeen and eighteen.

Just when do you write the story of a day like this?

Well, you can dare to write it at the beginning, but you would miss what really mattered. No, you would be wrong to write the end of such a story until the very end. After all, that is what it came down to.

Just like the story of Jesus. What if the Jesus story had been written at Cana, when water turned to wine? At the grave of Lazarus, when a man walked away from the grip of death? On the Mount of Transfiguration, when Peter, James, and John were privy to the glory of God’s Son? All made for great drama.

Yet the story of Jesus could not be written until after his atoning death, until after his life-promising resurrection. The victory of Christ rides on the fullness of the story. We are forgiven because of that death, granted eternity because of that resurrection. We wouldn’t dare close the book before then. The end of our own story—no matter how tainted the beginning—depends on the end of his.

Jeff Hopper
June 22, 2015
Copyright 2015 Links Players International
The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at