Romans 7:19- For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do.
It was February 1966. The Brookings Bobcats and the Watertown Arrows were tied for first place for the ESD wrestling championship. It was the last dual match of the season. Who won this match was the ESD champion. The stakes were high! We were wrestling in Watertown, so Watertown had the “home field” advantage. Their coach must have given their team a huge pep talk, because those Arrows came charging out of the dressing room. Then, when we were introduced by the announcer, to shake our opponent’s hand, every one of those Arrows came charging over to our side, to shake our hands.
I was aware that I was afraid. I was psyched out! That’s how my match began; I was psyched out, I was afraid. Halfway through the match, I realized, “I can beat this guy!”, but it was too late. The match ended with a 2-2 tie. It was the last match of my high school career, and, what should have been a win, was a tie.
Fifty-three years later, I still remember that match, and I can’t let it go. It’s stupid of me to hang on to it. So, why don’t I let it go? It keeps popping up in my memory. I tell myself, “You should have won. You shouldn’t have let fear take hold of you.” Then, I hear the words of a friend, “Don’t should on yourself.” I know it’s in the past. There’s nothing I can do about it. So, why don’t I let it go? I tell myself, “One day at a time, Kwen. All you have is today. Tomorrow’s not here. The past is done. Don’t let the past and the future steal today.”
I continually find myself in such situations. I know the right words. I have the right knowledge, but something in my mind keeps me stuck. Paul’s analysis of his mental struggle, in Romans 7, is my struggle, and, I believe, it is every person’s struggle, in one form or another.
In verse 24, Paul concludes his honest appraisal, and comes to the conclusion that we all must honestly come to, “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” His answer comes in verse 25a, “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
The 12 Step people’s slogan, “Let go, and let God” has got it right. To surrender to God is victory! We are letting a God, who is bigger than our failings, our knowledge, and our tainted goodness, add His eternal life into our earthly life. There is the hope! Paul had it right; “Thanks be to God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”