Tuesday, November 6, 2007

How Important is it....Really?

"Surprised to see an empty seat at the Super Bowl stadium, a diehard fan remarked about it to a woman sitting nearby. 'It was my husband's,' the woman explained, 'But he died.' 'I'm very sorry,' said the man. 'Yet I'm really surprised that another relative, or friend, didn't jump at the chance to take the seat reserved for him.' 'Beats me,' she said. 'They all insisted on going to the funeral.'"
~ Coffee Break Ministries

This may seem like a funny little illustration. The sad thing is that for some people, this may not be too far from true. Football is a great American pastime. I enjoy it as much as anybody. When I was able to attend my first Vols game in Knoxville, I was very excited. The game lived up to be even greater than I had expected. The atmosphere was like nothing I had ever experienced for a game.

But it is very important that we always keep things in perspective. So here are a few reminders when it comes to sports:

1. It is only a game. Some people base their mood and everything in their lives upon a win or a loss. After Phillies reliever Mitch Williams gave up a World Series winning home run to Joe Carter in 1993, Phillies fans pelted him with hate mail and serious threats. It caused Williams to start packing a gun. He retreated to his Texas ranch, thought about quitting baseball, and was later traded.

2. Keep your spending to a minimum. Someone said, "Imagine another world looking down at 60,000 people who pay $900,000 to sit in a stadium that cost $45 million to watch 22 men being paid $7 million a year dispute the possession of a ball that costs $16.95." Billions of dollars are spent each year on sports. There is nothing wrong with recreational spending. But we might ask ourselves how much we spend on these things in comparison to what we give to the Lord.

3. Value your friendships. I have seen what sports can do to relationships, and it is not pretty. When church basketball games end up in fist fights, when sports tournaments bring out the worst attitudes ever displayed in public by those who claim to be Christians, and when pride over a win or loss keeps brethren from wanting to talk to one another - we have a problem.

There is more to say on this subject, but the final point has to do with what it all amounts to in the whole scheme of things. When Jesus comes there will only be one victory for us to be concerned with. The importance of being on the winning team in this case is eternally significant.

"And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown." ~ 1 Corinthians 9:25


  1. May I add...

    4. Don't support the Vols.

    Just kidding. Coming from a sports fan, you have done a good job in reminding each of us to be careful with something that is nothing but recreation.

  2. Sport addiction is a major sin in the church that has become cool to have.