Meridian Star

August 10, 2013

From the Shepherd’s Heart

By Dr. John A. Temple / guest columnist
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN —     "Then Nathan said to David, 'You are the man! Thus says the LORD God of Israel:

'I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul.  I gave you your master's house and your master's wives into your keeping, and gave you the house of Israel and Judah. And if that had been too little, I also would have given you much more! ' Why have you despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in His sight? You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon." — 2 Samuel 12:7-9


In 1981, Pete Rose broke Stan Musial’s National League Batting Record. During the early 1970’s I attended several Cincinnati Reds Baseball games and watched “Mr. Hustle” play. Pete Rose was an awesome third baseman and batter. He always gave 100 percent when he played.

    The day he broke that record, everyone was cheering for him. Of all the players of his time, he was sure to be in the Hall of Fame! The problem is that he never made the Hall of Fame and probably never will. The reason is because of a bad habit he allowed to continue.

    Pete Rose liked to gamble. It seemed like an innocent habit, but when the commissioner of baseball discovered that Rose was betting on baseball, he banned Pete Rose from baseball for life. Thirty-two years later, we continue to have successful athletes throwing career and reputation away for lifestyles they know are contrary to their primary calling and blessing in life.

    It is a shame to say, but many people have spent a lifetime building their lives only to throw it away for a moment of thoughtless pleasure.

    David was a young man selected by God to be King of Israel. He was given more than any might imagine could be theirs. Yet, David has an affair and kills the innocent husband to have the woman as his wife. Because of this, David’s kingdom is wracked by division and strife from that point on.

    Much pain and suffering came his way because he could not control himself. The unborn child will die. Another son will be killed in battle. David will be publicly disgraced because of this secret sin.

    Every one of us should take regular assessments of our habits and choices. If we are sowing wild oats, we need to remember we will harvest the same someday. The really successful person is never the one that does well for a short time.

    The successful person is the one that goes all the way. A quote credited to Yogi Berra is, “Don’t quit until you quit.” Not only in baseball, but also in life, we need to finish strong. For that to occur, we must make every play count, on and off the field of life.

    Dr. John A. Temple is pastor of Poplar Springs Drive Baptist Church, located at 4032 Poplar Springs Drive in Meridian. Visit the church website online at www.