When my son Karl was about eight years old, I introduced him to the game of golf. I gave him a little starter set of clubs and took him out to the course with me. Karl would tee up his ball and whale away at it with his mightiest swing. Usually he sprayed the ball all over the place. But since he could only hit it 60 or 70 yards at best, his direction could be off by 20 degrees and his ball would still be in the fairway.
As he grew up and got a bigger set of clubs, Karl was able to drive the ball off the tee 150 yards and farther. But if his drive was still 20 degrees off target, his ball no longer stayed in the fairway; it usually went into the rough. Accuracy is even more important for golfers who can blast a golf ball 200 to 250 yards off the tee. The same 20-degree deviation which allowed little Karl's short drive to remain in the fairway will send a longer drive soaring out of bounds.
This simple illustration pictures an important aspect of the life of faith: Your Christian walk is the direct result of what you believe about God and yourself. If your faith is off, your walk will be off. If your walk is off, you can be sure it's because your faith is off. As a new Christian, you needed some time to learn how to "hit the ball straight" in your belief system. You could be off 20 degrees in what you believed and still be on the fairway because you were still growing and had a lot to learn. But the longer you persist in a faulty belief system, the less fulfilling and productive your daily walk of faith will be. As you grow older you will find yourself stumbling through the rough or out of bounds spiritually if the course you have set for your life doesn't agree with Scripture.
For many adults, a mid-life crisis is the result of basing their concept of success and fulfillment on the world instead of on the Word of God. Tragically, many of our children and teenagers are heading for the same fall because their beliefs are not founded on Scripture. As a result, their lives are often bankrupt before they leave high school.
Prayer: Lord, Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Teach me Your truth today that I may walk in it.
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Daily In Christ with Neil Anderson is a popular daily Bible devotion. This Neil Anderson devotional offers wisdom and insight for applying Biblical truths to the ups and downs of everyday life to help you grow spiritually. Spiritual growth doesn't just happen. You have to constantly strive to grow in the Word of God and Jesus Christ. Reading daily devotions provides strength and encouragement in your daily walk with Jesus Christ.