In 1991 Scott Norwood played for the Buffalo Bills football team. It was the Super Bowl.
There was time for one last play. The Bills were down by one point. That’s when Norwood came onto the field. He was their leading scorer. If he scored, they would win.
The world watched as he got ready for the snap. He kicked it. That’s when the fans started to go wild… but for the other team! The kick had gone wide. The next day the headline read: “Wide and to the right: The kick that will forever haunt Scott Norwood.”
He felt horrible.
Despite their loss, Buffalo held a parade for the team. Norwood went up on the platform with his teammates but lingered in the background. During a speech from a local dignitary the crowd started chanting: “We want Scott! We want Scott!” So up to the front he went and received a standing ovation.
It was a moment of grace.
This teaches us something about the grace God has extended to those who are in Christ. In Ephesians 2:8-9 Paul explains: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Remember that blunder you made? That mistake? That big one you’ve tried to forget? Do you feel dejected like Norwood, but on an existential scale?
When we’ve messed up as much as we have, it’s insanity to boast about how great we are—but it’s gratitude to boast about how great God is.
God’s arms are wide open. Really. It’s a new day.
–*Max Lucado, Glory Days: Living Your Promised Land Life Now (Thomas Nelson: Nashville, 2019), 107-8, 114.
–Bible quotes are from the NIV.