Why is that we get excited to go to a stadium and cheer on our favorite sports team. We wear their colors, scream and shout, sing songs and get that big foam finger. We know the players by name. We invest our time and money in sports paraphernalia. And when they hit a home run, make a basket, make it into the end zone or cross the finish line the crowd goes wild. Don’t get me wrong I like sports. I love the Atlanta Braves. My dad and I have been fans since I was a little girl. I can sing take me out to the ball game with the best of them. And I love cracker jacks.
The other night, in a prayer meeting, I saw a vision of a stadium full of people. The crowd on its feet and full of excitement. Then in the vision I saw Christ on the field, he ran into the end zone but instead of spiking the ball he just turned and stretched out his arms.
Whoa. It hit home for me. How often do we yell, scream and get excited over our favorite sports. How often do we talk sports at work, around the dinner table at our local gas station? How many times are we looking forward to the big game?
Then I thought about Sunday mornings. How quite are the pews? Do we sing, dance and praise God with the same passion that we cheer on our sports teams? Are we as excited to show up in the house of God as we are to head to out to the sports stadium? Do we talk about Jesus and how he died for our sins, and gave us a new life around the dinner table? Do we talk about the wonderful ways he has blessed our lives when we are at work or out with our friends? And why is it we are so comfortable with shouting and cheering even screaming for our favorite sports team, but so uncomfortable shouting praises to the one who gave everything so that we may have life.
I challenge the people of God to think about the excitement they feel when their team scores and the cheers they give to that team on the field and to ask themselves… doesn’t our savior who died on the cross deserve more excitement than that? Doesn’t he deserve our praises? Doesn’t he deserve our upmost attention and thankfulness? Come on people of God. If you can cheer for a team on the field, then you can cheer for the one who stretched out his arms and paid the price so you could have enteral life. Can we get just as excited and fired up in church this Sunday as we are for our sports teams when they win the game? And if we did get that excited… That excited for God, how would the whole atmosphere of the Body of Christ change? I think it’s worth a try. How about you?