One of the greatest occurrences in the world of sports happens when a team or athlete makes a comeback. Comebacks are what makes good teams great and have the potential of turning skilled athletes into superstars of the sport. If you’ve been at an NBA game or a Grand Slam and watched these miraculous recoveries take place right before your eyes, you’ll recall that no one on the court or in the stands paid attention to the past because what was happening in the present exceeded every blunder of the first half or the first set.
Comebacks are just as real in life as they are in the sports arena. We can all relate to times in life when we’ve committed a few too many turnovers or unforced errors and found ourselves in a pretty bleak situation. These are times when we need to raise our eyes off our failures, focus on the things that can be done in the present moment, and watch the momentum of our life begin to shift.
There’s a good chance we remember King David as the man after God’s own heart, but there was a time in his life when he was definitely not running after God. His affair with Bathsheba and the murder of her husband brought David to the brink of ruin. It was perhaps the darkest point in his life and it looked like David’s reign as king was over. The story, of course, does not end in failure, but a remarkable comeback.
David’s response to the greatest blunder of his life is worth noting and offers helpful principles for us so that we can make lasting comebacks.
First, David listened. Hearing what Nathan had to say must have not been easy, but David’s ears were tuned to what the man of God had to say. In a game situation when a basketball team is down often the coach will call a timeout. In the huddle, the players listen to the coach’s advice and return to the court to execute the play. Similarly, sometimes in life we may be blinded by our circumstances or totally vexed by the fouls we’ve committed. These can be difficult times to think clearly, but they are the moments when listening to the words and insights of a good friend or mentor is crucial. Their words may make the difference between losing the game entirely or making a great comeback.
Second, David repented. The posture of David’s heart was right. Forgiveness was the way forward. Whether in a game situation or a real-life circumstance, our ability to admit where we’ve gone wrong is a key to turning a bad score into a great opportunity. When it comes to our relationship with God, it’s important to remember that God is always ready and willing to forgive and that there’s nothing too difficult for Him to handle. God’s ability to redeem even the most broken life is one of the qualities that makes Him who He is – the Redeemer. If comebacks begin with listening to good advice, then turning to God in repentance is most definitely another step in the right direction.
Third, David worshiped. Failures become permanent only when we refuse to rise up out of the ashes. The way up is through worship. Here comebacks in sports and comebacks in the life of a Christ Follower differ. Athletes may look to the strength of the team or perhaps the team’s superstar for answers, whereas the right response of Believers is to look to God’s ability to come through in the clutch. God is the source of all wisdom and our comebacks in life become unstoppable when the attitude of our heart is worship. Worshiping God not only takes our eyes off our failures and places them on God, but it is also the right response of every man and woman whose hearts are chasing God’s.
If you feel like you’ve committed a few too many turnovers and unforced errors, you must know that the game isn’t over by any stretch of the imagination. Your comeback can begin right now. Making the choices to listen, repent and worship will create an ethos of hope and it will unleash the power of God in your life. The result will be a big win for you and the people around you.