A LITTLE BIT OF FOOTBALL IN THE CHURCH?

If you get a chance today, listen to this clip!  It’s the audio of the Seahawks first round draft pick, LJ Collier, receiving a phone call from Seattle general manager, John Schneider, and coach Pete Carroll. They are calling to share with him and his family that he is going to be the Seahawks 2019 #1 draft pick.  The pure joy and passion in LJ’s voice as he screams “Let’s get it! Let’s go!” can’t help but bring tears to your eyes, right?

NFL draft day for some is an over-hyped media frenzy, and I don’t disagree.  But it is also a day full of so many wonderful stories of young men who overcome incredible odds as they are surrounded by families who have gone all in to help their sons go after their ultimate dream!  As I watch some of their stories and watch the proud tears fall from the eyes of their mothers and fathers, I see a true picture of sacrificial, long-suffering love.  And, for me, those tears are inspirational.

They inspire me to wonder if I’m as passionate as I really want to be.  I mean when is the last time I have truly let my heart scream “Let’s get it!  Let’s go!”?   These moments inspire me to want to be a part of a community that truly cares for others.  A community that is there in the tough times, but also there to enthusiastically cheer a personal triumph.  Isn’t that what the church is called to be?  How can we, as the church, surround others and help them go for their dreams in the same way these families have?  How can we, as a church, believe in our children the way these families do?

Paul, in his letter to the Colossians, calls us to be the church when he writes: “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.   Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone.  Forgive as the Lord Forgave you.  And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”

Look, I know we’re not a football team.  And I know that there is a whole bunch that is wrong about the NFL, but one thing that I see that these families get right, is they know what it takes to make a dream happen.  They know the grit and determination it takes not only by the player, but by the family and friends around them, to get something done.  And I’m just saying that when I watch that, I think in my head: “You know our church could use a little bit of that ‘football’ mentality and heart.”  

And so, this afternoon, take some time to listen to that clip again and ask yourselves these questions:

1)      When is the last time you yelled “Let’s get it” in church?

2)      What would happened if we got this excited when someone who is homeless found a home?

3)      When is the last time you were moved to tears by a personal story of triumph in church?

4)      When is the last time you screamed and shouted encouragement to someone in the church?

May God inspire us to be a better “huddle”.   May God inspire us to be a better “cheer team”.  May God inspire us to be a better church.

Your friend and pastor, weighing in at 97 pounds my freshman year but determined to “go get it” every down I played as safety for the Wagner Raiders, Pastor Brook

Tim Schaaf