By Del Duduit
There are things in life we all might take for granted.
Lights that come on when we flip the switch.
A good hot cup of coffee in the morning.
The unconditional love of my grandchildren.
But who would have ever thought to put college football on the list?
Or going to church?
Or the freedom to choose what not to wear?
In the blink of an eye, our world has changed. Poof!
Promoted fear and panic has gripped the nation to the point people are afraid to go to the grocery store – or even outside.
Little things in life that people took for granted are now at risk.
I discuss this very topic in Chapter 35 of my just released book, Bama Believer: 40 Days of Devotions for the Roll Tide Faithful.
It highlights the Jan. 1, 2015 match up between the No. 1 ranked Crimson Tide of Alabama and No. 4 ranked Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl.
The Buckeyes entered the contest with their No. 3 quarterback, and all the prognosticators said the Tide would roll over OSU.
The following portion of that chapter picks up in the third quarter after Ohio State closed the gap to trail 21-20 at the half.
Ohio State had dominated and out-gained the Tide 348 yards to 139.
But there was one more half to go.
In the third, Jones fired a rocket to Devin Smith for a forty-seven-yard strike, and the Bucks led 27–21.
The Buckeye defense stiffened and picked off a Sims pass and returned it for a score, and their lead grew to 34–21.
Right before the third quarter ended, Alabama kept their hopes alive by scoring to put the game at 34–28.
Then disaster happened when Elliott broke through the line and outran everyone for an eighty-five-yard touchdown and the 42–28 lead.
Bama fought back and scored with 1:59 to play when Cooper caught a pass from Sims to stay in the game 42–35. But the Tide got the ball back without any timeouts left and little time remaining.
But Sims’s final pass into the end zone was intercepted, and Ohio State advanced to the National Championship game. The Buckeyes beat Alabama with a third-string quarterback. Some commentators suggested the Tide might have taken the contest for granted, although Bama faithful knew this was not the case.
Have you ever taken your blessings and relationship with God for granted?
In today’s hostile climate, there are some things we should never take for granted, because one day we could turn around to find they are gone.
The church is a target of radical socialists who are trying to shut its doors.
Make sure you keep the following a priority and never take these things for granted:
God’s love: Your Heavenly Father cares so much for you that He sent His Son to die for your sins. Never assume you are worthy of this gift. By His grace, you can live an abundant life and tell others about the plan of salvation. Don’t take His love for granted. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
Life: This gift is unique to you. Be thankful for each day you are alive and healthy. Make the most of your opportunity to live your life as a Christian. There are millions of unborn babies who never received a chance to live.
Forgiveness: This is one of God’s greatest gifts to you. But don’t take it lightly and treat it like a genie in a bottle by willfully sinning so you can seek forgiveness later. Appreciate and revere the great sacrifice Jesus made for you when He died on the Cross to atone for your transgressions.
Your gift: You have one. Everyone does. You may not be the best singer or preacher of the Word. Your gift may not ever be noticed by a crowd. If you are blessed with the ability to write, then pursue it. If your gift is thoughtfulness, then send cards to people. Maybe you are a prayer warrior. If you do not use your gift for His glory, He may take it away. Your gift might seem small to you, but it could be life changing for others. Use your gift. Don’t take it for granted.
Freedom: Men and women died for you to enjoy this rare gift. Remember that when the forces of evil demand that you denounce it.
Current events should remind you every minute that life can change in a moment in time. Don’t put off letting your loved ones know how much they mean to you. Don’t assume that they know.
What do you take for granted?
And you can grab Bama Believer: 40 Days of Devotions for the Roll Tide Faithful here.
Del Duduit is an award-winning writer and author who lives in Lucasville, Ohio with his wife, Angie. They attend Rubyville Community Church. Follow his blog at delduduit.com/blog and his Twitter @delduduit. He is represented by Cyle Young of Hartline Literary Agency.