I love sports. (And since God did not endow me with Olympic…or Little League…worthy athletic ability, that statement pertains mostly to spectating, although I do love playing/giving other players a free target for mockery.) Football has my heart, but watching any form of competition is one of my favorite things (this excludes Nascar racing…I can’t watch a car drive around in circles for hours).
So I was beyond excited to read an article entitled Deeper Lessons of March Madness on Relevant magazine’s website. It completely resonates the reasons why I, and millions of people, find so much enjoyment in sports. Here’s my favorite part:
You know the moment in a basketball game when your team is down by a dozen or so points, but makes a run and brings it to within two? And then the crowd rises to its feet, loudly cheering, and the team gets a new bounce in its step, hitting a long three to take the lead? That moment, with the deafening noise and dispirited opponents losing control—is a moment when you can touch the glory, where you glimpse—dare I say it—the divine. You get goosebumps, you slap a stranger’s hand, and you raise your voice to the rafters for the glory to continue.
In these moments I envision God smiling at us humans and thinking, they are feeling it in small doses. Unfortunately, many of us leave these sporting “highs” without thinking that maybe they point to something greater that surrounds us. What if sport really is a gift from God? What if the blessings of sport are only a fraction of what is available to us? I think it probably saddens God when the good things in life—sports, natural beauty, art, etc—are cheapened and seen only as ends unto themselves; not as the signposts to a greater grace that exists in the world.
The full article is definitely worth a read, sports fan or not. Let March Madness, and sincere appreciation for God’s innumerable signs of love for us, begin!