Friday, February 22, 2008


DAY 27 Winning Edge Devotions

1 JOHN 1: 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

In football, we teach a principle called ‘winning the sudden change’ and it takes place after we have some type of turnover. If we give up a fumble, throw an interception, or have a punt blocked we ask the defense to run on the field with a lot of enthusiasm and resolve to stop the momentum and fight to limit points.

I remember one game in particular where we fumbled early in the game and our defense hit the field with so much excitement that even the officials looked at us like we were crazy. Our defense went out with such an attitude that we stopped the opponent and ended the threat.

When we make mistakes, it puts us immediately in a negative spin. If we are not careful, one slip up can create all kinds of errors and poor attitudes. As a coach, I am always looking for ways to not follow up mistakes with more mistakes. Sometimes the errors come in bunches.

The quicker we can recover and get back in the competition, the better. It takes a focused and poised demeanor to face the problem head on and work through it.

This passage in I John is a great balance for us in handling mistakes or errors in our spiritual lives. The first principle in this passage is that we will sin. When we become Christians, we still have to live out our life in the flesh. We are new creatures in Christ, but there is a process where we begin to grow in the new nature that God has given us. The Bible speaks of putting off the old and putting on the new. It is a sometimes frustrating process of 2 steps forward and 3 back, 4 steps forward and 2 back, until, over time, we begin to show the habits of what Christ desires in us.

I think one of the key points in this process of sanctification is ‘winning the sudden change’ or, in other words, quickly rebounding from sin into repentance. I believe this passage is encouraging us to quickly confess and not spend long times weighed down by sin.

God forgives us, in His love and mercy, and restores us. His forgiveness is cleansing and redemptive. The quicker we can agree with Him our errors, the sooner we can begin the steps of progress and not decline.

If you know you have blown it and the game momentum is changing. Win the sudden change by turning to the God of grace and trust Him to make things right. The sooner we do that, the quicker we can get back to walking with Him in meaning and victory!

Father, forgive me for coming up so short. I marvel at Your love for me and Your readiness to cleanse and restore me. Do not allow me to wander from You or spend time running from Your grace. Help me to see this as a sudden change opportunity to leave it before the cross and continue my journey with You!

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