Links Daily Devotional

MISTAKES: Lessons learned from 50 years of disciple-making (Part 9)

“This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.” (1 John 5:4b, KJV)

Jay Haas chose his son Bill as a captain’s choice for this year’s Presidents Cup. He also chose him to be the player in the final pairing of the singles matches.

Who would have known the Cup would be decided on the last hole of the final pairing?

The most touching thing for me about that Sunday was the television interview by Todd Lewis with Jay and his son Bill shortly after the round. Jay stood to Bill’s right side. Lewis asked Bill what was special about his win. “I’m so glad he picked me,” Bill said, smiling, as he slid his fingers on top of his father’s shoulder.

Later in the interview Lewis asked Bill how it was out there. “That’s the hardest position I’ve felt in my golf career,” Bill said.

As I thought of Jay’s choice of his son for the critical role on behalf of the United States, I reflected on the position in which our Father placed Jesus with the future of the human race at stake. And Jesus’ words: “I have finished the work you have given me to do” (John 17:4).

One of my greatest mistakes in life came as a result of my brother’s death. I was so devastated by his death that I clenched my fist at God and screamed, “Why… why did you take him?” I blamed God for his death. If there is a God, I thought, he must have been asleep the night he died, because no all-powerful God of love would ever allow such a wrong thing to happen.

My mistake was I had adopted a faulty view of the character of God. I did not understand that “God is love” (1 John 4:8b, ESV). I lived with this view for more than a year, the emptiest time of my life. It took Jesus to lift me out of it.

Just as Bill Haas won the deciding point of the Presidents Cup for his father and his team, Jesus won the major victory over death itself for his Father and for all of us.

We are in the midst of a great life-and-death contest, far greater than any Presidents Cup, World Cup, or Olympics. Our eternal destinies and ultimate joy are at stake. Just as Jay Haas devised the winning strategy and son Bill executed it, our Father executed the greatest plan of history through his Son Jesus. A plan that anyone can get in on. Unless they make the same mistake I did after my brother’s death.

What was my mistake? Unbelief.

How do you get in on God’s great plan?

One way—no matter where you are in life. Young or old. In suffering or in joy. The singular work of God is to “believe in the one he has sent” (John 6:29, NIV).

Jim Hiskey
October 20, 2015
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