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Don't count me out
October 26, 2009
by Pastor Billy Wallace, Dassel Church of Christ

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend two of the last three regular season games of the Minnesota Twins in the MetroDome, including the division tiebreaker.

It was an amazing run, and it was amazing to be there amongst over 50,000 fans.

When the Twins were three games out of first place, with four games to go, I gave up. I was certainly rooting for the Twins, but I’d given up any hope of a comeback. Statistically, it was just not going to happen.

As I cheered with over 54,000 other people Oct. 6, I gladly ate all the crow I deserved. The Twins won that 12-inning thriller 6-5, and pulled off one of the greatest comebacks in baseball history.

I think a lot of people are like the Twins – they just want a chance.

People may have a lot of things stacked against them, by their own mistakes and by life, and people have given up on them.

Maybe as you read this, you feel that you’ve been that person – the one who everyone was giving up on, but I hope you didn’t believe what others were thinking or saying. Your friends, your family, your co-workers, even the church down the street may have given up on you, but God never does.

You’ve probably heard the story of the prodigal son, but the real message in that story is not about the son. We’ve all heard about, or lived, the story of this young man. He left home with a pocketful of money. He blew the money, had his time of fun, and ended up with nothing. He came home with his tail between his legs.

This is not a unique story. What’s unique is how the father reacted.

He was pacing on the front porch – waiting, praying, crying for his son. Finally, he sees his son in the distance and he runs to him, embraces him, and is ecstatic about his son’s return.

Now, remember, this young man was feeding pigs and sleeping in a barn. Imagine the filth and smells that covered him. But the father didn’t care; he hugged him, kissed him, and had a party. This was his son, the son he’d never given up on.

This is not just a random story that Jesus told to warm people’s hearts. This is a story telling you and I just how God feels about us.

God does not give up on us. He’s not a “fair-weather fan,” who’s there when things are good and skips out on you when things are bad.

If God won’t give up on you – then never give up on yourself.