Tag: NFL

How Big Is The Game?

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I’ve mentioned this before. More than once.

I really like football. Especially the National Football League.

Just like a lot of folks throughout the nation.

But is that a good thing?

Lately, I’ve been going through a period of introspection; asking myself why I do or don’t do certain things. Why is entertainment so important to me? And specifically, why is the NFL so much a part of my life?

How big is the game…to me? How about you?

In just a couple of days, two teams, supposedly the best two out of a league of thirty two, will meet to decide which team is the World Champion.

And finally, after 60 minutes of playing time, two hours of instant replays and commercials, and thirty minutes during which a typically bawdy halftime show “entertains” the viewers, the Lombardi Trophy will be presented to the new champions; the Super Bowl XLIX World Champions.

Why is it such a popular game? Why do I enjoy it so much? Again, just how big is the game?

American Football has been around since 1892, but its popularity didn’t really take off until after that first Super Bowl game, which was played on January 15, 1967. Since then, and especially over the last twenty five years, Super Bowl Sunday is one of the biggest party days of the year!

I keep asking myself, “Is America’s obsession with sports a good thing?” And, more importantly, “Is MY obsession with football a good thing for me?”

Has the big game become too big…for me? For you?

Can I love both the game AND the Lord at the same time? Can I actually skip watching the big game, and not feel like I’m missing out on something? Not mope around like I’m being punished.

What would happen if I didn’t watch the game, or periodically check the score on my smartphone? Would my actions affect the game’s outcome?

What would I miss? What could I do with the three plus hours I would save by keeping the TV off?

I might miss some great plays. I could miss a few funny commercials. And yes, I just might even miss fellowshipping with my football buddies.

And there’s always the cheerleaders and halftime show to consider. “But I never see the cheerleaders…” Sure, Mike, sure.

But what could I gain by not letting the Super Bowl become so super in my life this year?

I just may have an opportunity to REALLY connect with friends. Something beyond an occasional high five, or, “Hey, bring me some chips on your way back from the kitchen!”

Maybe I’d have time to really appreciate my wife, and not just the party food she prepares for the Big Game. I could turn the control of the TV’s remote over to her for the evening and watch something she’d enjoy, instead.

Who knows? Perhaps I would find the time to read and meditate God’s word. Have a minute or two to pray. Quiet my heart enough to hear the Ruler of the Universe speak to my soul.

Like I said, I’m doing some serious thinking about my love for football. As far as I can tell, football has never added anything of real value to my life. Maybe it’s given you a lot, and that’s cool.

But honestly, I believe I just may be able to live without it.

Maybe I will.

“Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware, like a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth. Keep alert at all times…” (Luke 21:34 – 21:36 NLT)

Heroes in the NFL?

Someone is always messing with the dictionary; always trying to rewrite the definition of the word “hero.”

Who are the true heroes?

Hero definition: a person of distinguished courage or ability, admired for their brave deeds and noble qualities.

Notice the words – distinguished courage and ability, brave deeds and noble qualities. A hero is much more than an admired person, don’t you think? An admired person may be cordial, polite, generous, and nice to little old ladies. But that doesn’t enter them into the Who’s Who in the Worldwide Book of Heroes.

A hero is a person of distinguished courage; noteworthy, outstanding, head and shoulders above the norm, courage. A person who faces hardships and possibly dangerous situations, even while staring death in the face, maintaining composure to accomplish the mission or honorable deed.

Brave deeds and noble qualities must be kept inseparable if they’re to be used in defining a hero. I mean, brave deeds can be accomplished by a robber attempting to knock off the Chase Manhattan Bank. I wouldn’t call it noble or honorable, would you? Daring? Yes. Noble? No.

I believe our nation has slipped a cog or two when it started referring to professional athletes as heroes. Regardless of whether the sport is football, soccer, horse racing or auto racing, performing well in their sport doesn’t qualify them to wear the hero shirt for the day. It takes more. At least it should.

And now, with the NFL draft behind us, someone else is messing with the dictionary. Imagine, a 7th round draft pick, 249th overall pick, never played a game in the league, may not even make the team’s roster…who’s treated like a hero. The President and First Lady mixed their voices with the rest of the country’s lexicon modifiers, equating a person’s sexual preference with a person of distinguished courage or ability. The fact that a person is the first openly “gay” to be drafted by an NFL team shouldn’t put them in league with people who are admired for their brave deeds and noble qualities.

What is so brave and noble about coming out of the closet?

Anyway, I shouldn’t be surprised. And you know what, it isn’t our President’s fault, or his wife’s fault. It isn’t the media’s fault or the “gay” football player’s fault.

It’s simply the way this world is. Jesus talked about it, Paul wrote about it, and the Holy Spirit bears witness with my spirit; these are the last days.

Throughout man’s existence there have always been people who’ve tried to change the rules, alter the definitions, and make sin acceptable and even honorable. In turn they try and discredit the people who stand for righteousness, labeling them fanatical nuts. So nothing’s new.

“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight! Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine, and valiant men in mixing strong drink, who acquit the guilty for a bribe, and deprive the innocent of his right.” (Isaiah 5:20-23 ESV)

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5 ESV)

Do you want to know who the real hero is? He’s the one who, with no guarantees that anyone would accept his daring, brave, courageous and noble deed, gave his life a ransom for you and me.

The hero of heroes, Jesus Christ.

And he’s STILL showing his noble qualities by continuing to love this nutty, mixed up world clear to the end. He’s not willing for anyone to perish; not the gays, not the straights, not the lexicon modifiers.

No one.

He’s already gone to hell and back to prove it.

Super Sunday?

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“Party hardy!”, the fool yells. And before the night is finished, his soul slips into eternity.

“Let’s eat, drink, and be merry. After all, we all gotta go sometime; might as well go out on the high side!” This is the quote of someone who has never looked death in the eye.

“When I die, I wanna have booze in one hand and a babe in the other!” As if that’s an impressive feat. The macho man who speaks such idiocy will soon find his bravado melting into a pool of eternal sorrow; moments after he breathes his last.

“Hell’s gonna change when I get there! I’ve got some definite ideas how things should be run.” Can anyone be THAT belligerent?

“I don’t believe in God, the devil, the Virgin Mary, or Santa Claus, for that matter. I only believe in myself.” Spoken like someone who really has a handle on life.

“God fears ME! I’m the meanest #%!}|> in the county!” Sure. Right.

“My body is my god, and I’m going to let it enjoy every good feeling it craves.” Yes, there have been many who have espoused such lunacy.

The above quotes reflect the mindset of America’s party animals. “Live for the moment; be a party going someplace to happen. You only live once, so go for it all!”

Tomorrow is Super Sunday, the annual, all day super party culminating with the NFL’s Super Bowl. Much more than a football game; it’s America’s reason to party.

Super Bowl XLVIII (48).

I love the game, but I am grieved over many things that seem to accompany it. Not because they’re part of the game.

No, they are part of our society.

Drunkenness, gambling, prostitution and sex trafficking, domestic violence, and broken lives.

Broken lives. Many will wake up the morning after the big game with their world in shambles; some won’t remember why. Others will try and forget.

Some won’t wake up.

Yes, the commercials will be entertaining and fun to watch, and the game should be a good one; but to many, Super Bowl Night will be a night with eternity on the line. And that’s not funny, or entertaining.

Maybe it would be wise to take some advice from Solomon, BEFORE the game begins.

“Better to spend your time at funerals than at parties. After all, everyone dies – so the living should take this to heart. Sorrow is better than laughter, for sadness has a refining influence on us. A wise person thinks a lot about death, while a fool thinks only about having a good time.” (Ecclesiastes 7:2-4 NLT)

Think about it. And act accordingly. Eternity lasts an awful long time!

Halftime!

20131125-194711.jpgWhat a game! Did you see it? I’m referring to the Broncos/Patriots game last night. Wow!

I must say, I was hoping the Broncos would win. And at halftime, with the score 24-0 in favor of Denver, I was tempted to shut the TV off and read a book.

I would have missed quite the show!

I wonder what Coach Belichick told his Patriots in the locker room?

Patriots scored their first possession in the second half, and eventually led Denver 31-24. Finally, with only 3:06 left in regular time, Denver scored a TD, tying the game.

Overtime was interesting, as well. It looked as though Denver would score early. They had first possession because Belichick declined it, choosing to opt for playing with the wind rather than against it. But, no score by either team for about the first 13 minutes of OT.

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