Have you ever blown it… big?

•    Maybe a job interview for that “perfect position” and you said things you never intended to
•    A relationship that was never supposed to end but crashed and burned because of something you said or did, or didn’t say or do
•    Maybe a horrible financial decision that took a long time to recover from, or maybe you haven’t yet
Have you missed the goal so badly you feel like a complete failure? Has that failure defined you; made you look at yourself as someone who will never succeed at anything significant?

A few Novembers ago, a College football team in South Carolina, the Clemson Tigers, were in a must win game to continue their season. Down 14-28 in the third quarter, they came back to tie 28-28 with about one minute to go in the game. Clemson’s field goal kicker, Chandler Catanzaro had an opportunity to win the game with a 30-yard field goal. For a College kicker, that’s similar to a basketball lay-up. Everything lined up well, but Chandler missed it. How do you think he felt? These are his words: "like a failure and overwhelmed." 

If you were in his shoes, would you rather run to the sidelines or out of the stadium?

When you blow it, would you rather go to the church to deal with the pain or go elsewhere to try to escape it? Would the church make the pain go away?

In the dying moments of the game, Clemson’s defense gave the ball back to the offense. Chandler got a second chance but now it was from 43 yards out. The problem was that confidence in Chandler was leaking. Few people believed in him now: the fans, his teammates, his coaches, and even Chandler himself. There was one exception… Clemson’s Head Coach Dabbo Sweeney. As Chandler took the field Dabbo said: “We can win it now or we can win it in overtime. I would prefer we win it now. But whether you make this kick or miss this kick does not matter. I’m your Coach and I love you and I’ve got your back.” Believe it or not, he missed again! HE DID NOT! HE MADE THE KICK and Clemson won the game!

Chandler went on to the NFL 3 years later and in his rookie year broke a NFL record by making his first 17 consecutive field goal attempts. He is one of the best in the sport at his position and in the month of November 2015, Chandler kicked a field goal in the dying seconds to win a big game, at the highest level in football.

A mistake does not have to define you for the rest of your life. The power of someone greater loving you and believing in you can turn around the worst moment in your life.

That is the gospel of Jesus. God’s love and forgiveness covers our failure. 
•    More than our failure is God’s love
•    More than our pain is God’s comforting friendship

Believe in the “Coach” who never gives up on His pursuit and commitment to walk beside us through everything. Invite Jesus into your failure and pain. Then dream… and try… and never give up on a life of significance. Someone has your back. Live life for only His approval already gained through the cross because we're loved... even when we miss.