John 3:16-17

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it.  —John 3:17 (tlb)

This story was shared with me and our high school boys at open gym one evening by my brother in Christ, Paul Sligar. In the 1980s, two Class A teams in Mississippi vied for the final playoff spot to advance to the state playoffs. Tishimingo led by two points, 16-14, late in the fourth quarter and had the ball on the opponents’ 40-yard line. There was not enough time left for a touchdown drive. The Tishimingo coach called his son, the quarterback, over to the sideline and said, “Son, I know this sounds crazy, but I need you to give the ball to our tailback. Tell him to run sixty yards in the wrong direction.”

The QB said, “Dad, are you kidding?” The coach replied, “Son, just trust me.”

The QB relayed the play in the huddle, and the team drew a delay of game penalty because of the confusion. When the QB called the play again, the tailback said, “Your daddy must be crazy!”

But Tishimingo executed the play, and the tailback ran through the back of Tishimingo’s end zone for a safety, which tied the game at 16-16. The game went into overtime, and Tishimingo scored a touchdown to win the game 22-16.

It turned out that the head coach had information none of his players had. He knew that his team needed to win the game by four points or more to advance to the state playoffs. Eventually, they placed their trust in his seemingly wacky advice and won the game. God also has information that none of us have. He knows that we must commit our lives to Christ if we are to experience eternal life now and forever with him in heaven. It sounds wacky to give your life to a man who died on a cross two thousand years ago. But God knows how the game ends, and we must trust his plan for our lives because he always wants to give us the best through his perfect love. Place your trust in Christ and advance to the eternal playoffs in heaven.

Prayer: Father God, before I was a believer, I thought that the story was a crazy one. But I know it’s real, and I can’t wait to see how the story ends when I get to see Jesus face to face. In the precious name of my Savior and Lord, amen.