I’ve been around the block a few times in my life… not as many times as some, but a lot of experience in diverse areas of life. I’ve mostly learned through making mistakes or to put it another way, by failing. I’m not sure I have even batted 275 or 300.
There is a reason I was sent down to the minors in 2005 and told to sell cars for a living.But it is while we are sitting on the bench that God is able to do surgery and repair areas that rendered us ineffective on the playing field. And it has been while sitting on the bench that I have been able to learn what is important to the Lord and what isn’t.When God does surgery on us, He always does heart surgery. There is no use repairing the torn ligament in our pitching arm if He doesn’t correct the true source of our poor play…which is almost always, a heart problem.
I won’t get into all of the numerous heart issues I’ve had or continue to deal with in my own life but if there is one thing I can tell you after having gone under the Lord’s scalpel it’s this…there is always rehab and then redemption!
None of us are ever sent down to the minors forever. The Father’s ultimate purpose is to make you better than brand new and place you back into the game! You may not be a pitcher again…you may go back into the game as a shortstop or outfielder, but that is God’s business…not yours.
After I came off the bench in 2015 it had been 10 long years of surgery. I had been pretty stubborn and for that, the Lord had to ride me hard in order to break this wild stallion and show me I could do nothing without Him. Every son the Father loves He disciplines. We forget that truth. Being corralled is not punishment…it is discipline and there is a REAL difference between the two…but I digress.
Speaking prophetically to you…I want you to know that everything you have been through, everything that you have failed in, every job lost, every relationship broken…God has used to get to your heart. Often, He was not the reason you lost the job or went through the divorce or went through the desert experience. The truth is most of those times it was your decisions that brought about the problems…not the Lord’s.
Scripture says, “The gifts and calling of the Lord are without repentance”. Romans 11:29. While the author was speaking to first-century Jews in that Scripture, it has greater significance than that. Repentance means “a change of mind”. In a very broad sense, God has not and will not change His mind about your calling and the gifts on your life. You and I might change our minds but God never does! “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6
The movie “The Natural” comes to mind. Roy Hobbs had so many natural talents, but he messed up and due to that mistake…he spent most of his life playing ball in hidden semi pro ball clubs…until he was discovered and given a second chance. When Roy decides not to repeat the same mistakes and fights through some pretty difficult resistance, he prevails.If you give up now, you may never see all that the Lord has for you. If you turn back after coming so far, you will not discover that the Lord had you slated for the championship game.
In my children’s book “The Silk Road” the caterpillar named Fearful loses everything after he has to go through the shallow pool; a type and shadow of baptism.
“Now with all the provisions he had made for himself stripped away, Fearful felt vulnerable, and said to Hopeful with a shaky voice, “I want to go back to our yard, Hopeful.” Hopeful cautioned his young friend immediately, “What has been left in the water are just remnants of your old life, my friend…If you return, you will still remain empty-handed…even what you still possess after going through the shallow pool is useless to you now!” he said, trying his best to explain the uselessness of going back. “Besides, if you go back now, the great journey we’ve set out upon will remain a mystery to you as well. If you continue with me, not only will you regain what you’ve lost in the shallow pool, but you will have the opportunity to see how all your needs will be provided for!” The Silk Road ©2020 Penit Publications All Rights Reserved.
Out there in the not too distant future, God has a plan in which you are to play a part. You may feel stripped of everything you used to trust in, but if you quit and go back now, it will remain a mystery. Going forward means regaining not only what you feel you’ve lost, but you will see all that God will do…His plan will make sense after the rain and clouds have passed.
Greater days are ahead…bluer skies, greener pastures. Do not make a decision in the valley of depression or during discipline! Allow yourself to mend. Allow time for the heart surgery to have it’s completed work.There is a bright future, a great day, and a celebration that will take place soon. It will not be complete if you are not there. The team is counting on you…and the Owner of the team will soon ask the Holy Spirit to put you back in the game. Be ready!