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Is the Target in Sight?

Do you remember the pressure you felt in high school or college when you had a major exam the next morning on subject matter you really did not understand?  Those who were good students had done such a good job day by day in their study habits leading up to the test, their stress level was not greatly elevated.  Folks like me did not study regularly or well.  Test days were filled with huge anxiety because I knew there were large sections of the material that I did not know.

Because my senior class was small, the really smart kids and the rest of us were all good friends.  As I would ask them for help in explaining some math or science formula, they would hear my question, and respond, “Oh, that is really easy.”  It was easy to them because their intellect could readily grasp the facts.  For me, it was never easy in math or science.  So, even though I would nod as they would walk me through a formula, they might have well been speaking Russian!  I heard the words, but the meanings alluded me.

Along the way, I did have some very patient teachers who would ask me to stay after school to try to work with me.  They were diligent and compassionate, but after a while, even the most dedicated would say, “you really don’t’ understand, do you?”

It was not that I did not try.  It was just that the subject matter was so very foreign to me.  I would do everything the good students did…. I had a notebook, good pencils, good textbook, special help in study hall times, friends who would stay after school some days to help me with homework, teacher’s who tried to assist…. But when I aimed my “bullet” at the target on a test, I missed more often than I hit the target for a good grade.  I was a poor student on tests always missing the mark!

Sin is “missing the mark”.  One who lives devoid of God and in continual sin has never hid the Bull’s Eye.  Sin prevents us from being “on target” to please God and the penalty of missing the mark with God is eternal separation and spiritual death.

Matt Emmons had the gold medal in sight. He was one shot away from claiming victory in the 2004 Olympic 50-meter three-position rifle event. He didn’t even need a bull’s-eye to win. His final shot merely needed to be on target.

Normally, the shot he made would have received a score of 8.1, more than enough for a gold medal. But in what was described as “an extremely rare mistake in elite competition,” Emmons fired at the wrong target. Standing in lane two, he fired at the target in lane three. His score for a good shot at the wrong target? — 0. Instead of a medal, Emmons ended up in eighth place. (David Mordkoff, American Emmons Misses Out on Gold by Firing at Wrong Target,, 8-22-04)

It doesn’t matter how accurate you are if you are aiming at the wrong goal. My friends, I’m afraid many of God’s children are going to get to the end of their lives and find that they were aiming at the wrong target!  (Copied).