I was sent an email from a friend last week that contained the story of a football game between Gainesville State High School and Faith Christian High School in Texas. I have seen several great stories of compassion in the sports world but I'm not sure any of them tops this one. I encourage you to take about 5 minutes and watch the news story here.
Considering that story, I have a few questions.
Which side of the ball are you on? If you feel like you are on the Gainesville State side where no one cheers for you, I would like to tell you something about Christmas. The baby in the manger was God in the flesh. One of the overwhelming messages of the life of Jesus is that God is for you. He knows your name and really wants the best for you. More than just dividing His fans in half, God Himself chose to break into our world to rescue us from our past mistakes and give us a future. Like the boys in Gainseville State School, we have to make amends for our past but the great thing is that the price has already been provided. If you don't know how that works, I encourage you to find someone who follows Christ and ask them.
Maybe, though, you're like me and you have a lot more in common with the Faith Christian players. We have some regular cheerleaders in our lives. People who believe in us and support us and upon whom we can depend for a kind word or act of love when we need it. Our question is, who are you cheering for? Who around you desperately needs a fan? How can you build a "spirit line" for him/her? Learn their name, be clear that you are cheering for them. If you are a follower of Jesus, this is what the Spirit does for us everyday. You have a chance to be part of what He is doing!
Even if you don't have fans, you can be a cheerleader. Who knows, you might just find some fans as you encourage others!
Finally, some of you are coaches. You have resources not just for you but you direct other people all the time. Almost all parents qualify, here. Are you willing to take some of your fans and give them away? How can we redirect our resources to benefit others, even those who oppose us? I have a secret, you are probably not in any more danger of losing fans than the coach at Faith Christian was. Let's not hoard our resources but put them in places where they can really be appreciated and let's lead others to do the same.