Mar 7, 2009

My Daughter Jese and David Beckham

Jese finished her first day at the goalie position on the 7-8 year old girls soccer team and I gotta tell you I don't believe that I've ever been more proud. She played awesome. I was super excited and probably shouted and celebrated just a bit too much when she dove through the air and plowed into the grass to stop a soccer ball that was threatening her goal. She grabbed the ball and leapt to her feet with a determined look on her cute little face. I was dancing by this time. She threw the ball back into the field of play and looked over at me for approval. I was screaming at the top of my lungs, "You are awesome JESS, WAY TO GO". While Jese and I were having our moment the game didn't stop, in fact as soon as she threw the ball one of the opposing players immediately kicked the ball with all her might and it sailed right over Jese's head and into our goal.

Jese was immediately heartbroken but I shouted for her to keep her head up and keep doing her best. I was determined that I wasn't going to let anything get her down. She had done a terrific job and we ended up walking off of that field triumphant because of the efforts of our littlest player. I was beaming.

The reason I was so pumped, even in the face of her failure to stay focused on the game, can be found in one simple explanation; I am her father. Even though she absolutely should have kept her head in the game, I was so proud of the fact that she was giving it her all.

In this same way our Heavenly Father beams when we strive to do our best. Don't you think that He knows that you will never be perfect. I believe that it is this simple human desire for perfection that keeps many of us from a right relationship with Christ. We assume that we can't do it right or be good enough at this certain time in our life so we just quit trying and say, "I'll get there some day but just not right now." We fundamentally misunderstand the saving power of God's grace.

No one can ever be perfect, no matter how super awesome you think you are, you can't be good enough to save yourself. If we were capable of doing that we would not need a savior. The dude who says, “I live a life without sin” is a big fat liar. Romans 3:23 (NIV) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God...

Even Paul, one of the greatest dudes who ever lived, couldn't get it right. Romans 7:18-20 (NIV) I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

What makes you any different.

We know that we won't ever be perfect, in fact most of us are super clear on that. So what stops us from getting back up when we make a mistake. Do we really believe that God is so disappointed in our failure that He just throws His supernatural hands up and says, "I've had it with these morons, here's a bolt of lightening for you!" Why is it that we believe that God will go to great lengths to save someone but is itching to kick them out once they are in.

Grace is what saves us and mercy is what keeps us. His mercies are new every morning.

I'm not saying that grace is an excuse to blow off practice and effort. But God is a lot like a happy father on the sidelines of a soccer game. He rewards our efforts. My daughter skill level is no where near the ability of David Beckham, but I would much rather have her on my team than him any day. Why? Because she's my daughter and I love her, even when she messes up.

I don’t ever want to forget that I am washed daily in the forgiveness, grace, and mercy of Jesus Christ. He loves me so much that he forgives me and keeps me. He thought of that even before I knew it was available. While we were sinners, Christ died for us. Thanks Jesus. I couldn't make it without you.

Please remember, no matter what you've done, He's still your father and He loves you. Jesus loves sinners. Period.

Jeremy Foster

The Jeremy Foster Show