In 1929, the Rose Bowl was a college football game played in Pasadena California between the University of California Golden Bears and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. During the game, one of the most memorable plays in college football history occured. One of the players for the Golden Bears, Roy Riegels, picked up a fumble, somehow, got turned around and ran 65 yards the wrong way toward his own goal line. His teammates were yelling and screaming but he couldn’t hear because of the crowd noise. Eventually, one of his own teammates tackled him before he reached the end zone and would have scored two points for the other team. Can you imagined how he must have felt?– Embarrassed, dejected, alone! At half time his coach made the announcement that those who started the first half would also start the second half. Roy sat motionless in the corner, with tears running down his face. Here’s the conversation between he and his coach.
“Coach, I can’t do it. I’ve ruined you, I’ve ruined myself, I’ve ruined the University of California. I couldn’t face that crowd to save my life.”
- “Roy, get up and go back out there — the game is only half over.”—
- How many Christians walk around dejected, embarrassed, alone, feeling convicted about past mistakes? How many bad decisions we’ve made do we replay over and over again in our minds. That does what its designed to do— make us feel worse and that paralyzes us from moving forward.
- So you’ve been running in the wrong direction; playing for the wrong team. Don’t just sit there sulking. The game’s only half over. Get back out there. The Coach (our Father) has the utmost confidence in you. That’s why he signed you in the first place. Don’t you know about the five-star recruit He signed from Bethlehem (on) High? Yep, signed with his blood which can never lose (it’s power). Jesus, the Anointed One has paved the way for you to reach your own goal(s). He made it possible for you to have good success. Be strong and courageous. It doesn’t matter if you’ve spent the last 30, 40, or 50, years running in the wrong direction. So what you messed up your finances, failed in a marriage, got pregnant and the father’s nowhere to be found. Never mind that your picture is next to the definition of procrastination in the dictionary. The game’s not over. Don’t look back! Move forward.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 (NIV)