For a long time, I think I believed that the sport of golf was out to get me. It existed to rip my heart out and torture me each and every tournament. It wasn’t until I started viewing golf as a gift that I started to approach each round as someone who was blessed to be able to play, rather than a victim who was forever doomed. It wasn’t until I started viewing golf as a gift that I started to approach each round with no expectations and view everything, even the fact that I was enjoying God’s beautiful outdoors, as a bonus. If I played poorly, I still got to enjoy the challenges of the day. If I played great, then I got to enjoy the feelings of success and victory. My approach to golf changed once my view of golf changed.
Similarly, it’s vital in our spiritual lives that we delve into God’s traits and long to understand who He truly is. Psalm 43:4, for example, is a reminder that God is the only true source for transcending joy. Theologian and author John Piper said in a recent blog post that, “The only proper allurement to the Almighty is the confidence that in his right hand there are pleasure forever.” My favorite author, Donald Miller, recently tweeted, “If your spirituality doesn’t rid you of guilt and shame, it’s based on lies.”
Do you view God as the source of exceeding joy? God’s intention isn’t to destroy you with guilt and shame; it’s your incorrect view of God or someone else’s incorrect view of God that is making you feel like that. God wants you to experience true joy inside His will, at the foot of His altar.
This devotional is taken from our most recent Training Table devotional book in our latest print magazine. Log in here to access our most recent Training Table. Subscribe here to receive 12 issues a year and a daily sports-related devotional.