Football or Christ?

This shouldn’t even be a discussion, but sadly it has to be perhaps.  I enjoy watching football (granted I enjoy it more when the Jets win), but how does my passion for God on a Sunday compare to an afternoon of football games?

Piper’s questions are excellent I think.  This is a good examination that we should all make of our own hearts.  Would we miss watching our favorite team on a Sunday afternoon because we were tired?  Would we miss church that morning for that reason though?  Do we prepare for and get excited to have friends over to watch a game?  How about our enthusiasum to review the sermon from the week before or fellowship with the saints after a worship service?

We must check our hearts for where our true affections are invested.  Are you able to recount more of the games you watched on Monday morning than you can about the life and teaching of Jesus?  Would people at our jobs know of our supposed love for God more than they know about our devotion to a particular team?  Would you be willing to spend 3hrs in prayer and Scripture devotion Sunday after church instead of watching a 3hr game?

Notice in these questions, I have not said that watching a football game is a sin – but if we have more passion and excitement for the things of the NFL than we do for the things of God, we are not obeying the first and great commandment, and that would put us far from the Kingdom (Mark 12:28-34).  The things of God are eternal matters, and they deserve our complete devotion.  We must find our fulfillment in our pursuit of God and our joy in His glorification.  It is only then that we will find ourselves satisfied.  Think about these things.  I know I have to.

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5 responses to this post.

  1. Victor,

    It’s only a sin if you’re a Jets fan. 😉

    Seriously – good post. Time spent in this world can be used for the things of God or for our own pleasure. We make the decision where and how we spend our time. But God will weigh the time we spent and how we spent it on the day of judgment. If we desire to please Him, we’ll weigh how and where we invest the time He gives us.

    http://www.holyspiritguidedministry.com/8_Unless_You_Make_Time.pdf

    Reply

  2. This is a good analogy! It reminds me of one of the defining moments in my church-going life:

    One Sunday I sat in the upper balcony of my church, watching the people below throughout a somber, quiet, somewhat droning service. I watched as the congregation sat down, stood up, knelt down, bowed their heads, sat back down again, as one body, all with rote movements. They listened with dutiful silence to the sermon. There was one murmur of activity as they all exchanged greetings and handshakes, but they just as quickly sat back down in silence when it was over.

    The dull silence continued to the end of the service. The moment the words, “Go in peace” were spoken, the congregation came to life. People stood and began chatting with friends they had seen across the aisle. They waved to others at the other side of the room. They laughed and talked and hugged and made plans for afternoon activities together. It was a bright and happy scene.

    I stood up high, and felt as if I were looking down on the church through God’s eyes. It struck me how His heart must be terribly wounded that His children had not only not enjoyed their time spent with him, they were relieved to have it over.

    I wondered what our church life would be like if we entered into fellowship with God in the same way we enter into it with each other. Give Him a warm hug and a smile, laugh with Him, ask Him what’s on His mind, make plans with Him.

    God’s heart would rejoice, and the church and our lives would benefit!

    (Okay, I’m done now.) :);)

    ~Christine

    Reply

  3. Christine…thanks for your description. God is certainly worthy of our honor. It must pain Him that the people who say that they are His people are busy with the world and love the things of this age more than the things of the next.

    If you are interested, this week’s sermon at our church was on this very subject – http://www.LivingFaithRI.org is the place to check it out.

    What steps do you think both individuals and churches need to take to draw back to the LORD?

    Reply

  4. Thank you, I’ll check out that link.

    In thinking of your question, I’m reminded of the phrase, “To know him is to love him.”

    Perhaps when we don’t honor God properly, it’s because we don’t really feel honor toward Him. We think of Him is as a great big “Force,” an abstract idea. We respect that idea, but don’t feel very much emotion over it.

    What’s the best way to grow to love someone? It’s by spending time with them, becoming aware of their personality, their qualities, their mannerisms; the way they think, the things they do and say. As we become closer to someone, we get to know them; and sometimes, when we know them, we find ourselves loving them.

    What if we got to know God like we would get to know a friend? As individuals, we can spend time alone with Him. By reading His Word, we can see what He has to say and how He says it. We can look at His Son, Jesus, as an example of what God’s personality is like. Through prayer, we can feel His Presence guiding us.

    As a church, maybe we might take some time to look away from preconceived notions, what we think we know about God, and instead share our individual experiences of what He’s like. Just as a person would describe one friend to another.

    I truly believe that if we built a relationship with God the same way we would with another person, we may learn so much more about Him. And when we truly love Him, worship and honor will come like breathing.

    ~Christine

    Reply

  5. If you wanna ask me another question, I can shoot for a longer post.

    :);)

    Reply

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