Defining Winners

Jan. 2, 2012

Romans 5:6

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.

Like most UW-Madison Badger fans, I watched with anticipation the Rose Bowl today. Sorry for the late posting; I wanted to enjoy the game this afternoon.

What an exciting game! At the end of the first quarter, there were more points scored than any other Rose Bowl. Montee Ball tied Barry Sanders record for number of touchdowns scored in a year by a college running back. There were lots and lots of points scored. Yes, the end result wasn’t what Badger fans desired.

Are winners only defined by the points on the scoreboard at the end of the game? Or are there other ways that “winners” are determined?

Personally, I think there are lots of ways “winners” are determined. I think of Aaron Henry, the #7 Badger who plays safety. From Florida, Henry grew up in a challenging background. He didn’t learn to read until his grandmother taught him in third grade. His father is currently incarcerated and he harbored resentment towards his mom for many years.

Henry feels that God has put him in a position where he can make good choices for his life. He easily could have been on a corner, doing drugs, or in jail. Instead, he recently completed his college diploma. Selected as one of the four senior captions, he stepped forward after the team lost back-to-back regular season games and encouraged the team to fight back, which spared them to reach the Rose Bowl.

While I’ve never met Henry, it seems to me that he has discovered that winning is more than one football game. How you live your life, what choices you make – these are the things that are most important in winning in life. Henry lives his faith, as demonstrated by the fact that he leads a bible study with about 20 players in the team hotel the night before games. While lots of kids go to college to play football or another collegiate sport, there are others who are involved to make an impact in the lives of everyone around them. Henry chose to do the later.

So, if Henry were to lead a bible study tonight, after the Rose Bowl loss, what might he say? I pray that he would emphasis how when Christ is a part of a person’s life, they are always winners. Thank goodness with God, a scoreboard isn’t necessary. Grace is offered to us to freely, without cost or having to be earned. And when we make God’s grace a part of our lives, we’re all winners.

Let us pray: He said, “Freely, freely you have receive, freely, freely give. Go in my name and because you believe, others will know that I live.” Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

 

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