“ Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.” – 1 Corinthians 9:24-27.
The college football games have started. While it is a new season, some things don’t change. For example, there are a few elite teams that will be elite in 2022. Then there are the other schools who look to the football season with anticipation and hope. The hope is that the team and players will have a breakout year and compete for a championship. Each week while watching the game of your choice the announcers and analysts will praise various athletes for their constant display of courage, dedication, perseverance, strength, determination, will, and passion. The young men playing college football are incredible athletes, but no one person can do it on their own. Teams win because they function as a team because the players execute the coach’s game plan.
We as Christians are part of a team. We are a group of people who are called by Jesus to work together with the common purpose of carrying out His will on the earth. Just like in college football, playing on God’s team takes sacrifice, dedication, relentlessness, courage, and passion. Since we as Christians are indeed a team, then we have a Coach that never makes any mistakes and ultimately wins everything. The game schedule for Christians is tough and a lengthy one, basically 365 days a year, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. We never stop playing because life never stops happening.
To play well in the game of life, we need to give our spiritual head Coach everything we have. We need to put all of our efforts into doing what He asks of us as a player on His team. Jesus will never fail and will perfectly do His part. It was up to us to do our part as players. As you accept your part of God’s team, your part in the body of Christ, you will not only find your place in the world but also purpose and meaning because you’re finally doing and being who you were created to be. You have a certain role to play, the others are dependent on you to do your part. That’s why it is important to do your part and pull for team God. Every part affects the functionality of the whole. It really does matter what you do or what you leave undone.
At times, we are going to get tired and want to give up. But the same way a team feeds off the energy of its fans, we can draw strength from one another. Paul reminds the church in Rome of the special power that comes through unity in Christ. “May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 15:5-6)
- God designed you to be a team player: agree or disagree and why?
- What are some of our responsibilities when we play on God’s team? What does being on God’s team look like in real life?