Athlete, Think About Your Super Bowl
1 Corinthians 10:14 (AMP)
Therefore, my beloved, run [keep far, far away] from [any sort of] idolatry [and that includes loving anything more than God, or participating in anything that leads to sin and enslaves the soul].
“For what does it benefit a man to gain the whole world [with all its pleasures], and forfeit his soul?” Mark 8:36
At the start of each NFL season, most teams have their sights set on winning the Super Bowl. Coaches motivate their players to work hard so they can accomplish the major feat of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.
Players are judged differently after they win a ring, and there is an immense value placed on championships. Plenty of players preparing to step on the field Super Bowl Sunday have yet to experience the excitement of winning on the largest stage.
These guys have been dreaming about this moment since playing Pop Warner as kids.
When listening to them talk about the Super Bowl, they want to win badly. They realize the monumental impact it would have on their lives and are consumed with doing what it takes to become Super Bowl champions.
The sports world, and even society, has elevated the Super Bowl to unbelievable heights. The standard of success in winning the Lombardi Trophy is so important that it has become an idol for those involved. It’s worshipped in a way that requires a full commitment from those in pursuit.
As followers of Jesus, we can also get wrapped up in our desire for “shiny objects.” If we aren’t careful, we can fall into the trap of idolizing anything from a brand new car to a bigger home to the perfect dream job.
Just like the Super Bowl, these things aren’t necessarily bad, but when we’re chasing satisfaction in something else, it replaces God as our greatest love and devotion.
If we’re consumed by acquiring that “one thing,” or excessively driven to making something happen in our lives, we can end up devaluing our relationship with God. Our own “Super Bowl win” becomes the ultimate prize, while our worship and commitment to God get pushed aside.
The Bible addresses this in 1 Corinthians 10:14 (read verse above). We can love God, follow Jesus, and still “win Super Bowls,” but we must constantly check our hearts to determine our motivation and what we consider most important.
When we’re satisfied in Christ and pursuing His will, we may get the “Super Bowl ring” along the journey. However, if we don’t, we’ll be okay because we have Him and the assurance found in Mark 8:36: “For what does it benefit a man to gain the whole world [with all its pleasures], and forfeit his soul?”
- What are you pursuing in life that threatens to become more important than your devotion to Jesus?
- What is something you chased after in the past and realized wasn’t as satisfying as you thought it would be?
A prayer to consider: Heavenly Father, I confess there are times that I want something so badly that it consumes all of my thoughts and efforts. As a result, I’m not focused on You. I don’t want to love anything more than You or allow anything to become more important than a full commitment to You. I pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Bryce Johnson is the president and founder of UNPACKIN’ it Ministries whose mission is to challenge, encourage, and inspire sports fans to follow Jesus and become more like Him. For more info visit: www.unpackinit.com, or email Bryce@unpackinit.com.