Today’s Reading: Luke 4:31-5:11 (additional reading: Psalm 64:1-10 & Proverbs 11:22)
Tiger Woods had one of the most incredible first years of any professional golfer in 1997. He won the prestigious Masters Tournament by an unheard of 12 strokes. He went on to win 4 of the 15 tournaments, earning $1.8 million in prize money and $60 million in endorsements from Nike and other companies.
But he did not stop there. Instead, right after the Masters, he called his coach and told him that he wanted to change his swing. He said his swing was not good. He wanted to make improvements. He was willing to risk his swing that had won him so many tournaments in order to further improve his skills, especially controlling his shots.
His coach believed that he could do it. But that it won’t be easy, and it would take time. So he and his coach worked on hitting hundreds of practice balls, studying videotapes of his swings, pumping irons, especially for his forearms.
While he was reconstructing his swing, he won only 1 tournament in the next 19 months. But he persisted. And one day, it came. He felt that his swing was now just right and that he could control his shots much better than before.
In the next 14 tournaments, he won 10 of them, including 6 in a row, 3 of the four major championships, winning $6 million dollars, and he signed a $100 million endorsement contract
Why did he make a change? Why did he change a good thing? The reason is because he wanted to be better and he knew he could be better. Likewise, Jesus is not afraid of changing some things, even good things, because there is some other thing he wanted to accomplish. With Jesus however, he is not interested in winning human trophies and endorsements, and it is not that he needs to improve himself, but he is interested in winning people and winning them over to himself.
One example of this is in today’s reading. He was teaching a crowd of peoples the word of God. They were listening to him. He had a captive audience, what more could he ask for? Yet, Jesus changed what he was doing. He stopped. He went over to the boats and asked one of the fishermen to take him out on the boat a little ways from the shore. Jesus sat down in the boat and continued to teach the people from there.
Now Jesus was in a different location. He could still address the people, maybe more effectively since they could all see him now further away from them and his voice may be able to project to more them since he was facing all of them and the shore functioned better acoustically like an amphitheatre. You see just because something is working, doesn’t mean that there isn’t a bigger potential that we could reach, if we follow God’s leading a change a little.