Let My People Think

Posts tagged ‘training’

How to be a champion for God

NFL Superbowl 2017 LI Tom Brady New England PartiotsAfter the recent Superbowl victory by Tom Brady and the team, many of us are fired up. The football season is over, the New England Patriots rest on their well-deserved laurels, and many of us feel like we now have to wait till September to get any sense of sportsmanship and championship in our lives. But do we really have to wait? Not at all.

You see, we all want to be champions in life, but the question is not just of your passion or enthusiasm. The question is – what training program are you following? Are we only doing weekly bicep curls with our black leather thumb-index Bibles, cheering on who we perceive to be real athletes, while reading about the strong and the mighty in the news or on Facebook feeds, being content with attending third-rate programs with the kind of “training” that makes you fall asleep every time you show up? Holding hands in circles and singing kumbaya gets us only so far. We have been taught for too long to be passive spectators by tradition, which has a notoriously poor track record in training real champions.

We don’t need any more preachers with three-piece suits and silk ties (or jeans and a hip T-shirt, as the case may be) to sermonize us for an hour at a time in exchange for a monetary donation. Thank God for the good ones among them, but we have enough of them already. What we need more than ever are coaches who can roll up their sleeves, get down in the dirt with us, and show us the real moves, the ones that really work. We need them huddling with us in the locker room, showing us who we really are, showing us that we are “more than conquerors in Christ Jesus”, and doing all that in a real believable way. Week in and week out, up to and including eventual championship nights.
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Tom Brady’s Patriots, Superbowl 2017, and the real Gospel of Jesus Christ

Tom Brady with Bill BelichickThis past Sunday we witnessed a miracle on gridiron. A nearly 40 years old, relentlessly battered quarterback took his team from a 25-point deficit through a quick series of drives that culminated in earning the team, New England Patriots, their fifth Superbowl trophy.

At half-time, it seemed like it was almost over. At the score mark of 28 : 3 in the third quarter, it looked completely impossible. At that point, many people tuned off their TV sets to avoid witnessing the complete embarrassment. And those who did that missed the most improbable comeback in the history of NFL Superbowls.

As I was looking at the football field when it was all over, with members of opposing teams shaking each others’ hands (a sight sorely missed in today’s politics), and as tri-color confetti began to obscure the view, a sudden realization dawned on me. The next day I checked a few headlines, and my initial hunch was confirmed. The miracle didn’t happen on the football field. The real miracle happened in the locker room at half-time. While Lady Gaga was serving the public her warm, magnanimous, above-the-fracas entertainment magic (I don’t listen much to her music, but I found her half-time performance well-choreographed and tasteful), something very deep and dramatic was happening in Patriot’s locker room. (Let’s reclaim the phrase “locker room talk” for its lofty and legitimate purposes, shall we?)
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