Wednesday, January 8, 2014

When the camel's back gets broken...

After days of trying NOT to write this post, I can not stand it any longer. I need to type.

I love college football. For my husband, it is a passion. And so 22 years into our marriage -- 25 into our relationship -- I love it too.

So it will make perfect sense to you that even though he went to bed when a bowl game went late week (Not our Bulldogs -- he would endure exhaustion for them!), the kids and I stayed up to finish watching it. At the conclusion, the reporter asked the quarterback how he had pulled off the victory and this kid responded, "I knew God had my back."

And I began screaming at the television.

It was a final straw of sorts. A breaking point. Because, really? Really does this young man believe that God loved him more than anyone on the opposing team? 

Oh, don't get mad at me. I believe that we should do everything we do to the glory of God. And I know that God can and should be glorified through us in sports, academics, arts. I know.

But the implication by this QB was not that the young man was giving God the was that he was favored by God. And because he was favored, his team was victorious. And the silent inference was that God did not love the other team.

And that, dear ones, was the straw that broke this camel's back.

I am weary of living in a world of "sides" -- a world where this group opposes that group. Where if you believe a, b and c then you must hate those who believe d, e, and f. And if a hot topic arises, you better believe your Facebook news feed is going to explode with all the pros and cons and it all seems like screaming and yelling and foot-stomping to me.

We yell about health care, homeschooling, and homosexuality, to name a few. We rant and rave and in the stomping of our beliefs we stomp on others.

And it wears me out.

Because God DOES in fact love both teams. God gave the young men on both those college football teams the gift of health, the gift of athletic ability, the gift of opportunity. All of their gifts are God-ordained and I pray they will realize the necessity of using them to His glory -- and our entertainment is a nice by-product.

And, dear ones, God does in fact love all people. He sent his SON not for one political party; not for one activist group; not for one blogger's followers; or reality TV show family -- he sent his SON that WHOMEVER would believe in Him would have eternal life.

Young QB executed well in that game. He was faithful to his coach's plans and to trusting his teammates. He used his God-given abilities to execute all of that and in the end, his team won.

We are not playing a game of football and yet our words, our Facebook statuses and our platforms should be mindful of the fact that God wants us to be faithful in living out his plans, in trusting his faithfulness. Jesus lived the plan well. He did not bludgeon people to death with his opinions. He did not beat them over the head with his Bible. 

No. Jesus worked in relationship. He loved; he healed; he cared. He didn't form teams and he wouldn't have pitted one group against another.

Let us step away from the battering rams. Let's step away from being consumed with shouting our every opinion. Let us love the way Jesus loved.

I love the picture that Acts paints of the early church:

"All the believers were one in heart and mind....With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all." (Acts 4: 32, 32 NIV)

Jesus is alive. May His grace be upon us all.


Lynnie said...

Best I have read in quite some time. My sentiments exactly.