Today I was thinking about life, and all of the missed opportunities. I was thinking about all of the times that I had the opportunity to minister to people, whether for healing, words of knowledge or just a friendly chat. Opportunities that I had, which I didn’t take. Missed chances. I have changed my life since then, that is not to say that I don’t still miss opportunities, but I now take some too. I sometimes look back and think, “I wish I knew then what I know now, I would have done things differently”. You see you can beat yourself up for missing chances, but how does that help you take them in the future?
Let’s have a look a sport. I know that most of the readers of this blog are in the States, but I’m going to talk about soccer (football for those in the UK). There is a team called Liverpool. Now I don’t really like Liverpool because I am a Manchester United fan, and they are big rivals, but I’m going to use them for this illustration. In 2005, Liverpool were 3 – 0 down to AC Milan at half time in the Champions League. Now just to clarify, a match is 90 minutes long, 45 minutes each half. The Champions League is the top competition in Europe (arguably the world) for a club side to win, and AC Milan were arguably the best team in the world at that stage. Very few teams managed 3 goals against them, least of all in 45 minutes after being 3 down. Long story short, Liverpool scored 3 goals and the game went to penalties which Liverpool won. Down and almost out at half time, champions by the end.
Even though it hurts a little to tell that story (being a Manchester United fan), there is still a point to it, and believe it or not there is something that we as Christians could learn from it. I said in the first paragraph that there were things that I regret not doing (or doing) and that I wish that I had done things differently. There is nothing we can do about the past. We can change the future. Liverpool could have cried about the fact that they were 3 goals down, but they didn’t, they looked to change the future. We must learn from our mistakes, and put changes in our lives in order to see a better future. Look at what we have done wrong, and put it right. This is repentance. Repentance is not apologising profusely. It is merely changing from our ways to the ways that God has called us to.
We should be spending time reading the Bible. We should be listening to sermons, meditating on the Word and praying. Seeking first the Kingdom of God. If we are doing this, we should be growing, learning new things. Becoming more like Jesus. This means that instead of crying over what happened yesterday, learn from it and make the changes today. This way we can look forward to a more blessed tomorrow. We shouldn’t be envious of others, but if we see others doing things that we want to be doing, ask them for pointers. I really wanted to get prophetic words, so I asked the guy in our church who usually got them. I asked him to teach me how to do that. He did. I now have people asking me to teach them. This is how the Kingdom of God works! We see people healing and casting out demons, and we wish that we could do that. We want those gifts. Well here is a secret for you, you can do it! Matthew 10:8 is for all of us, not just those with a ‘gift’. There is a place for spiritual gifts, yes, but we can all do the things in Matthew 10:8. (Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.)
If you have never done this before, if you regret not doing it. Take a stand. Find someone who does these things and ask them to teach you. Spend time in the Word, meditating on scripture. Don’t just read it, believe it. Put it into practice. Let it become the Truth in your life. It is only half time, there is still another half to play. Make the most of it!
Bless and be blessed.