Third and Long


"Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!" -- Isaiah 30:18


I enjoy watching the body language of football players and coaches. The second down has to be the most emotional of the downs. For mediocre teams, there seems to be a lot of both anticipation and apprehension on second down; if the team performs well, they’re going to have a first down or third and then a short. But if they have a bad play on second down, they’re going to end up with a third and long.

It almost never fails that when the second down play ends and a bad team faces third and long, the coaches start slapping playbooks, receivers’ shoulders slump as they jog tired back to the huddle or linemen looking at each other with a “sorry guys, it’s my fault” and a “who can’t block around here” look.

But good teams—at least those with a good quarterback—have a different response. The QB is usually rallying the group, telling them to keep their head up. “Just wait guys. Be patient. Never count me out.”

Psalm 27:14 says "Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."

Jesus faced a significant third and long. He was in the grave three days, but then He made the big play—the world’s biggest play—He rose to life. His captors couldn’t hold him. Their physical abuse and slanderous accusations couldn’t hold Him. The stone tomb and stone door couldn’t hold Him.

No, His quarterback Father—the God Almighty—held Him the whole time. And He’s holding you and me right now. No matter what we’re facing on our teams, in our schools, in our homes or in our world, He’s got us. Third and long—His or ours—is no match for the Lamb of God and the Lion of Judah.

  • Are you getting impatient you want relief from the current events and situations in your life? Fall into God and ask Him what He might have for you in your waiting times.
  • Is He preparing you for something that He has for you to do?
  • Is He teaching you something?

2 Peter 3:8-9; Exodus 14:14


“Dear Lord, give me eyes to see the things You have for me right now, in this moment in my life. Help me to live out my purpose for the here and now and be patient for Your promises and Your will for my life. Amen.”

Bible Reference: 
Isaiah 30:18
2 Peter 3:8-9
Exodus 14:14