Given November 3, 2013
There are three types of people who are involved in a football game, really four. First, many people choose NOT to be involved in the game. They stay home and do their own thing; they don’t have any interest in the game or other things in their lives take precedence. They’re not committed to the game at all.
Second, there are those who go to the game. They may wear their team’s colors, sit in the stands with other like-minded folks and cheer their team on to victory…they hope. They’re committed to the team and take part in the game, but from a distance…where they’re sitting.
Third, attending this game are the players. They’re on the team, wear the team equipment, have been through a training process, and are willing to do whatever they can, with the talents they have, to promote the success of the team. These players are under the direction of the coach who has put them through some hard drills but they’re willing to do it because they have a deeper commitment to the team.
Finally, on this team, there are those who do most of the playing; the first team. They’re usually more experienced, stronger, and have put in the time and effort to get to the athletic level required to be successful against their opponent. They get in the game. They get to use what they’ve previously learned in practice in the game. They’re not just on the team, standing on the sidelines, but have made the greatest personal commitment to the success of the team.
If you go back and read the four types of commitments, you’ll see that they’re the same as those involved in the game of life. Some don’t care about the game (church); some go to the game (church) but only watch from the stands (seats). Others have chosen to be on the team but spend most of their time on the sidelines. Then, there are those who have made the commitment to get the job done (God’s plan). Do you see yourself in any of these categories? “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23). That’s the commitment Jesus wants.