No Hole-In-One

January 17, 2002
by Jim Messmer

1 Corinthians 13:9 – For our knowledge is imperfect and our prophecy is imperfect; but when the perfect comes, the imperfect will pass away. (RSV)

Golf may well be, as Mark Twain described it, "a pleasant walk, spoiled". The last time I played, I was so pleased with myself, as my shot from the tee, on the ninth hole at Quail Meadows, appeared to land just inches from the cup. I even had fleeting hopes of a hole-in-one. As I walked closer to the green, my joy deflated when I found my ball still twelve feet from the cup. It had simply been an optical illusion. The ball had been on a perfect trajectory, but had not travelled far enough, and my early perceptions from my distant vantage point proved incorrect.

Not only my golf game, but also my Christian walk could best be described as "hacking towards the goal". I am hopeful that you are more of a "Tiger Woods" of Christianity, but even if you're just a hacker, like me, the beautiful truth is that our spiritual game is going to get a lot better! With the complete revelation of our beautiful Lord, all illusions will be removed, and our path will be made perfectly straight, as He guides us personally, with His loving hand, to perfection. After admitting the problem with our present situation, Paul leaves us with this comfort as he concludes the chapter: "For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood. So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love." (1 Corinthians 13:12-13 RSV)

Prayer: Father in heaven, may we never lose sight of You, though we see You dimly now, not face to face. Praise be to You, and to Christ Jesus, for the promise of a coming perfection, that we may stand before You complete, understanding all that You have done, through Your love and undeserved kindness. And, Father, while we remain incomplete, whenever in doubt, may we abide in faith, hope, and love, and thereby remain on course. Thank You, Father, for loving "hackers" too. Amen.

About the author:

Jim Messmer
Washington, Illinois, USA

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