As soon as I was able to hold and swing a bat, my dad had me in the backyard hitting off the tee. As soon as I was old enough, I was playing coach pitch baseball on a city league team. I played baseball every year thereafter until high school, when I finally gave it up for soccer.
The two positions I played were shortstop and pitcher. As a pitcher, I mainly started the game, but sometimes I was brought in as a reliever. For relieving pitchers there is a statistic known as a “save.” A save, as you can guess, is earned when the reliever comes in and finishes out the game with his team still in the lead.
If you watch the nightly ESPN highlight reel, you will notice saves are highlighted over the myriad of other statistics, and that’s because we love to hear and celebrate salvation stories. Stories where the relieving pitcher enters the game in the bottom of the 9th with the bases loaded, no outs, and strikes everyone out to win the game for his team. We love to hear and celebrate stories like that, because salvation is the natural longing of the human heart.
While it’s exciting to watch your favorite closer save the game, the excitement and joy we feel in that moment doesn’t last. It doesn’t last because we long for a greater salvation, a true and lasting salvation. Something we can put our faith, our trust in, knowing it will not let us down.
The only One who can provide us with a true and lasting salvation is Jesus, because He is the only One who could pay the penalty for our sins, repairing our relationship with the Father (Col. 1:19-20). So the next time you celebrate your favorite pitchers save, remember that there is an even greater salvation available that will eternally fulfill the deepest longing of your heart, and that is the salvation Jesus provides through His cross.
Question for Reflection
- What are you trying to fulfill your God sized hole with?
Post adapted from my sermon: Only in Christ are our deepest longings fulfilled