Romans 8:16-17 - The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs -- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory.
Romans 8 is one of my favorite chapters in the whole Bible. It tells it like it is in Jesus Christ. Throughout this chapter you hear words like "no condemnation," "set free," "hope," "more than conquerors," all of it in and through Jesus Christ. Read it, memorize it. It's the power of God for your salvation and mine. One way that Paul describes a believer's new life in Christ is to call us "co-heirs" with Christ, sharing in His cross-earned, resurrection-delivered glory.
Co-heirs with Jesus -- that means we get to live eternal lives with Him, in His righteousness, in His joy, with His peace. Can you even imagine? Sometimes it's almost too wonderful to be believed. Other times, I think we dismiss the things of Christ as if the inheritances we have in this world are so much better.
It reminded me of an event and an ensuing question that happened in the life of golfer, Curtis Strange. It happened at the Masters, one of the most prestigious tournaments of the year. It happened on the Augusta National golf course -- one of the hardest golf courses to play, and it happened on "Amen Corner," in the midst of the 11th, 12th, and 13th holes where "amens" are often spoken after prayers are answered, in sometimes miraculous ways.
Curtis Strange stepped up to the tee box on the par 3 12th hole, teed the ball up, and hit a beautiful shot. It was flying directly at the flag stick on the green. When the ball hit the green, it began to roll straight towards the hole, and yes, incredibly, it dropped in the cup for a hole in one. The crowd went crazy with applause and cheering. Then Curtis Strange did an interesting thing. He leaned down, reached into the cup, picked up the ball, and he tossed it into the creek. Now the media went even crazier. With cameras on him and microphones, they asked him, "Why did you do that? Why didn't you keep it?" One person said, "You could have left it to your grandchildren."
I love his response. He said this: "I certainly hope that when I'm gone I have something better than a golf ball to leave to my grandchildren." Curtis Strange had much more to give his children and his grandchildren than a golf ball from the Masters. Sure, it was a hole in one. Sure, it was an exciting moment. But the love of a father, the love of a grandfather -- that would be infinitely more precious to those in his family.
Sometimes, I think that we are a bit foolish like those reporters that day. Sometimes we need straight talk that cuts through all the hype of this world and says, "There's something way more precious than this." That's what Paul is trying to tell us all today. In Christ, by the power of His Spirit, we are adopted into His family by faith; we are His children; we are His heirs. There's a love that God the Father has for you in Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. I pray you see how precious that really is for you today.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, sometimes we yearn for the things of this world so much that we denigrate or even dismiss what is precious from You. Give us faith to trust in the things that are eternal, the things You gift to all those who believe, the things that last. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Rev. Dr. Gregory Seltz
Speaker of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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