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Faith & Football
"Wilson," Coach McCord would say, "lead us in prayer." It happened almost
every game. Coach would finish his last minute pep talk then call on me
to lead in prayer before we went out on the field to lose the game. (We
were the absolute worst football team in the state of Texas.) I'd usually
pray for the safety of both teams and that our team would win. (It would
take Divine intervention.)
Later in life I've reflected on those prayers and asked myself, "Does
God really care who wins a High School football game?" I mean, this isn't
really David and Goliath stuff. We were not the "army of God" and they
were not "uncircumcised Philistines!" We weren't battling for the Lord
against ungodly foes-it was just a game.
I've noticed that Coach McCord isn't the only one who mixes faith and
football to no avail. Last year, the Falcon's Eugene Robinson had a busy
day before he played in the Super Bowl. In the afternoon, he was awarded
the "Bart Starr Award" for his "high moral character" from the Fellowship
of Christian Athletes. Later that night, his General Manager had to bail
him out of jail for soliciting an undercover police woman for sexual favors.
Call me cynical if you want, but I really don't think the Falcons lost
last year because Robinson turned out to be a spiritual flake, I think
it had something to do with Elway's arm.
If all it took to win a sporting event is a strong faith, then every
team would be trying to sign Billy Graham to be their quarterback. The
reason the Rams won the Super Bowl XXXIV had more to do with Warner's arm
than his faith. But the reason Warner is such a winner in life has more
to do with his faith than his arm.
Life-now that's something that God cares about!
Read "Being a Winner,
in Spite of Yourself" the sermon that corresponds to this devotional