Sports are part of the fabric of America. Personally I enjoy baseball, I try to catch games on TV when I can, but there is something about a good football game that I really enjoy, especially the college games. So I’m always very happy when the six month non-football drought comes to an end, and I can begin watching the different teams begin their bid for the post season.
Even though the games don’t count, I enjoy the preseason for reasons of its own. In most preseason games the first string plays for one series of downs, maybe two, and then the coach starts sending in the guys who are still fighting for a job, fighting for a place on the roster. Many of these guys are like Kurt Warner was a few years ago — working in a supermarket during the off season, just hoping for a big break. So when these players finally get on the field, they go all out to prove themselves.
Each NFL team begins the preseason with an 80 man roster. After a couple of weeks, that number is trimmed down to 65. 15 guys lose their chance to play, just like that. A couple of weeks later it’s trimmed down to 53. During the regular season, each team can name 45 players — from the roster of 53 — as active, game ready players. Guys like Peyton Manning obviously are on the list every week, no questions asked. But there are other players — players whose names we might hear mentioned only once or twice a season — who fight during the preseason to make the cut, and who fight during the regular season for a chance to play. Nothing is handed to them on a silver platter; they have to pay the price week-in and week-out to make the cut.
In the kingdom of God, there are no superstars with iron-clad contracts backing us up. We’re all like the guys on the sidelines, the guys whose names aren’t all that familiar, the guys who earn the league minimum salary, the guys who must prove themselves in order to make the final cut. That’s who we are.
“For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus”
(Romans 3:22-24, ESV)
God’s Word is pretty clear on this issue, there are no favorites or super-stars in this game we call life. We all are on a level playing field. We all need to trust by faith in God’s grace which is shown to us through Christ’s work and sacrifice in order to be on the team.
I’ll leave you with a simple question…Will you make the cut?