How does your NCAA bracket look?
If it is anything like mine, it probably has a lot of x’s on it. I watched quite a bit of college basketball this year, and yet, I underestimated the abilities of some teams. I looked at their names and their records, and figured that they had no chance of winning. And yet, I was wrong; and I suspect the same happened to your bracket: you underestimated some teams.
Now a basketball bracket is fun to fill out, and the reality is that nothing is going to change much this weekend or next as I continue to x out teams on my brackets. It is all in good fun; underestimating teams is part of the allure of sports.
But underestimating can be very dangerous; not in sports, but in life. How many times do you underestimate the power of sin? How often do you look at a magazine or hear a piece of gossip and before you know it find yourself kneck deep in one sin or another?
Like a ‘Cinderella’ team in the tournament, a small and unsuspecting sin sneaks up on you, big and powerful and devout confessor of the faith, and before you know it, you are behind, and pretty soon, sin has claimed victory over you.
Sin starts out small and unsuspecting, but it packs a massive punch, and it can knock you down and out in an instant. And you find yourself on the outside of heaven looking in; wondering how you could ever underestimate sin.
As we enter into the closing week of Lent, do not underestimate sin. Do not underestimate the devil and his deceitful ways and lies. Do not underestimate what the devil is capable of.
But here is the truth: you are not the only one who underestimates. Satan himself underestimated the power of the cross. Satan looked at the cross and saw Jesus hanging dead, and assumed that he had won; that Christ had lost. But Satan underestimated Him. Christ triumphed, overcoming Satan and claiming victory forever; thus gaining for you the full and total forgiveness of all of your sins.
Do not underestimate the power of Satan in his efforts to draw you away from the Lord; but do not underestimate the power of Christ to forgive your sins by the power of His cross.
For in the final bracket: Jesus always wins.