Links Daily Devotional

A Whole New Swing

Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. (2 Corinthians 5:17, NASB)

True confession: I have been known to tinker with my golf swing, even while I’m playing.

It’s one thing to be missing shots consistently and trying to figure out why so you can stop the bleeding, and it is quite another to tinker. I might make some swing change in the hope that it will gain me a few yards of distance, or perhaps reveal some magic ball-striking formula.

While on the course I’ve changed about everything but my socks. My goal is to improve, but often I lose ground.

As new creatures we no longer have to fix us, we just have to follow Jesus.Most of us want to be better golfers than we are, and that is a good thing. We think about golf, we talk to our friends about it, and we work at it. Now here’s the real “true confession”: sometimes I work harder at being a better golfer than I do at being a better Christian.

I might think of missed shots, but do I think of missed chances to talk about Jesus? I ask my friends to take a look at my swing, but do I ask them to take a look at my life? I watch golf on TV to see how the best players deal with different situations, but do I carefully watch mature Christians to see how they handle good and bad times?

So I step back and think of today’s verse, which says that in Christ we are new creatures. To put it in golf terms, we don’t take the old swing and tweak it, believing it will be good enough. No, we get a whole new swing.

All of this came to me because I now have a new swing. I tried it on the course (not the range, naturally) for the first time on Thanksgiving morning, and had some success with it. My friend liked it, and I was encouraged. Two days later I tried it again on the course, and this time also on the range.

Even though I have this new swing, it will take time to really know how to use it. The same is true with a new life in Christ. No one is born as a human fully mature, and neither is anyone born that way as a Christian.

I look at the world and I see people trying to fix their old swing (their old life), putting a Band-Aid here and a daub of paint there. Even if it looks and works better, it will never be enough. The only answer is a new life in Christ. Just like my new swing, that requires practice, thought, and commitment. But here is where tinkering ends and growth begins, because as new creatures we no longer have to fix us, we just have to follow Jesus.

Lewis Greer

December 7, 2015

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The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.