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Keep Swinging

Romans 7:15
For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate.

While I doubt anyone has ever made Romans 7:15 their life verse, I do think it’s the verse that best reflects my golf game! My golf ball typically takes a couple of lurching bounces before I watch it fall over some embankment and hear that familiar splash. Who thought it would be a good idea to put a pond in the middle of a golf course anyway? Isn’t it true that knowing what to do is not the same thing as doing what you should do? I know (in theory, at least) how to hit a golf ball straight as an arrow; I know the formula for posture and form. But when it comes to hitting the ball, I can throw all my knowledge out the window—or into the pond.

As Christians, we can sometimes think that if we just knew better, we would be better—more spiritual. So, we search for quick-fix bestsellers for our problems: “The Secret to Christian Living” or “Five Effective Steps to Powerful Prayer” or maybe attend a seminar that promises complete sanctification by day’s end on Saturday. We get caught up in thinking, “If I could just learn that principle or take that study or read that book, I’d master my life of holy commitment.”

Paul knew the answers to the questions, but all his knowing didn’t eliminate the battle he faced in living. He wasn’t released from wrestling against the same things that you and I battle every day. Even the Apostle Paul knew what it was to fail. Paul isn’t giving us a green light to sin. He emphatically reminds us later of our responsibility. But he was encouraging us to keep swinging, to stay in the game. The truth is, no one has it all together just yet. That day of glory is yet future. And Jesus Christ, the God-Man, is the only player who ever shot a perfect round, and fortunately, He’s given us His scorecard!