Redemption and missing field goals

Just got back from sunny FL to arrive in time for the snow in WV. Maybe we should have planned a 9 day vacation…..Anyhow, eager to get back to the blogging world.
Many of Jan 2nd’s bowl games lived up to the hype. The last game of the day, the Fiesta Bowl, featuring Stanford and Oklahoma St, certainly did. As Stanford drove the ball down the field for a last second field goal, the game seemed to be over. 35 yards is but a “chip shot.” Unfortunately for this poor kicker, he hooked it mightily to the left. Then came over-time where he had the opportunity to redeem himself. Only this time he missed another, slightly longer field goal. The Oklahoma St kicker didn’t return the “favor,” and went on to become the hero. Or at least, get a high five or pat on the butt or something like it.
Camera men always focus on kickers when they miss. I guess they want to catch them cussing or crying. You could see the look of dejection in this young baby faced kid. It made me glad I wasn’t his parent. I would much rather have my kid be a punter, since punters rarely lose games.
I also thought of other kickers who have missed memorable kicks. Boise St.’s kicker missed one last year that cost them a chance to play for the national championship.  If I’m not mistaken, I believe that kicker had opportunities to redeem himself and blew those as well.
I can personally empathize with kickers. Not because I’ve ever been a field goal kicker, but because I’ve messed things up before with my own sin. I’ve tried to redeem myself, and it just seems like I mess up again. 
This morning I was reading the book of Zechariah and going through the Good Book Company’s  good book guide Zechariah: God’s big plan fir struggling Christians. It posed an application question: What would it be like to live in light of the fact that Jesus has offered the perfect sacrifice and then sat down on the right hand of the Father?

I don’t have to redeem myself. I don’t have that pressure of redeeming myself, and then screwing it up again as I always seem to do. Freedom to follow Jesus, without fear of failure is a beautiful thing. Kickers choke, and sinners sin, but Jesus loves them both. Losers and sinners. There’s more to life than football, and there’s more to life than sin.  The Savior gets the final say when we embrace him through our imperfect faith. We don’t need to worry about the impossibility of redeeming ourselves. That’s for Someone else. Our job is to repent of replaying the “missed kick” over and over in our heads, and to instead continue looking at Jesus: the one didn’t back out, sin, or “choke” our redemption away.

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