Humility in the Huddle (7/26/12)

 From late August through mid-november, my Friday night plans never change. I always seem to find myself at a high school football game cheering for the boys on the field & reveling in the sights, smells & sounds of the stadium. The roaring fans, coupled with the fall's gift of "football weather," create excitment like no other.

While the thrill of Friday night football is infectious, it's not what draws me back each week. Instead, I am rooted in this ritual because of the blonde-headed coach sitting in the press box, with insatiable passion & enthusiasm for the game.

In becoming a coach's wife, I expected to watch a lot of football, but I never anticipated that it would facto into my spiritual growth.

This past spring, I began to see a parallel between football & walking with Christ. Before my husband's team begins each Monday practice, the coaches have developed their strategy for game day. And when Friday night comes, with the lights shining high over the stadium, it's the coaches who call every play & choose who will take the field. It is the coaches who have the final say, no questions asked.

Obsering this, I realized that God alone has the final say in our lives. He's the supreme "coach," & His eye on the goal of perfecting us in Jesus CHrist (Phil. 1;6). 

We can rebel against his ways, but we won't win in the end - just as players won't succeed by ignoring their coach's commands.

Ask my husband, & he'll tell you pride has no place on a football team. If that's true, it certainly has no place in the heart of a Christ-follower. Jesus says, "Therefore whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven" (Matt. 18:4 Niv).

In thinking about football, I wondered how often I live by my own playbook. I've seen how pride eventually leads to tarnished character and damaged relationships - to a life that falls short of God's perfect plan. Ultimately, it does nothing but tear us down & mar the image of Christ within us. But we can't do otherwise without being intentional. Like atheletes, we need to train daily, practicing the art of humility for when it really counts.

The question is, will we?