Tuesday I watched the US vs Belgium soccer game.
It was intense.
For 90 minutes neither team scored, but they did a massive amount of running across the field.
Belgium had more shots on goal than we did, but because of Tim Howard’s talent, our goalie, we blocked all the shots.
Then came overtime…
Both teams were exhausted, but nevertheless they rallied for a last ditch effort and with it came the goals.
Things ended up 2-1 in favor of Belgium.
So we’re out, they’re in.
How like life.
It’s in the overtimes of life where you discover if you have what it takes to live with your eyes fixed on the goal and to do it with grace and perseverance.
That’s where most of us fail.
Instead of a fixed gaze, we flounder in our choices.
Instead of grace, we get impatient, or cranky, or downright ugly.
And instead of persevering, we give up.
Just think what would have happened if Jesus hadn’t fulfilled his mission and instead thrown in the towel and walked off the field.
“Looking to Jesus the founder and perfecter of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” – Hebrews 12:2 ESV
If Jesus hadn’t lived and died for us, none of us would have a chance at a relationship with God.
And none of us would be forgiven of our sins.
But thanks be to God, Jesus stayed the course, set his mind on completing his mission, and was rewarded by a resurrected life which he now lives in heaven.
“Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” – Acts 1:11 ESV
It’s a comfort to know that everywhere we fail Jesus has succeeded for us.
He lived a life of perfect obedience to God’s commandments for us and died a painful death to pay the price for our sins.
By putting our faith in him, we too can score those perfect goals in life.
Want to play the game right?