This past weekend was the Super Bowl. As my team, the Dallas Cowboys, cannot seem to figure out how to get themselves together in the post-season, I didn’t have a dog in the fight in this contest between the Eagles and the Patriots. Even though I had planned to watch the spectacle simply for the commercials and the half-time show, I felt compelled to become a TEMPORARY fan of one team or the other.
I took a very scientific approach in determining which team to temporarily support and developed a short list of questions to guide my decision making.
- Was this the first trip to the Super Bowl for either team? (I do love an underdog.)
- Had either team never won a Super Bowl before? (Again, that underdog thing.)
- Which team has the best “stories”? (Like a quarterback who almost quit 2 years ago and now stands poised to lead his team into the Super Bowl.)
- And last, but certainly never least, which team has the better-looking uniforms? (Fashion is ALWAYS important!)
Using these specific calculations, I determined that for one night, and one night only, I would become a temporary fan of the Philadelphia Eagles.
As a good fan, I committed to cheering on my team; celebrating amazing plays and venting my frustration at missed opportunities. I argued with the officials about calls that went against my team and talked about the smart play calling of our coach. I urged them on with every first down and agonized at every heart stopping fourth down. I chewed my nails as I watched the time fairly fly off the clock as we painstakingly inched the ball towards the end zone in the fourth quarter, and then lamented the eons of time that we left on the clock for the Patriots. I cheered, I clapped, I gave high- fives to other fans around me, and rolled my eyes and threw serious shade at the Patriots fans in the room.
I was all in…
For that one game I had given it all I had, but in the light of Monday morning, my commitment to the Eagles was hardly more than lip-service about the highlights from the game around the water cooler. I certainly was not running out to buy Eagles merchandise, or converting my basement into a team shrine to the pride of Philly. Even though I had been all in for the big game, it was just for a moment.
It was temporary.
Did you know that God is a fan of YOURS? Not a temporary fan. Not a tepid fan. Not an “only for the big events” fan. A true, dedicated, sold-out, season after season fan! I mean if God wore novelty shirts he would have one with your face on it; and a big foam finger to help him celebrate that you-are-number-one!
I believe that God proudly points out “his team” to the angels and reviews the “great plays” of our day with all the hosts of heaven. I know that he is entirely delighted by our victories and deeply burdened by our defeats. I can almost see him standing on the edge of heaven cheering us on play after play; often shaking his head in exasperation as we miss clear opportunities to score. But no matter what, win, lose, or draw, he is our truest fan.
But I wonder…
I wonder if God ever feels like WE are just TEMPORARY fans of his? I wonder if he sees us show up for the big game on Sunday mornings; giving it our all in praise and worship, only to be tepid at best on Monday? I wonder if God feels like we are only temporary fans when we praise him in the light, but fail to speak his name into the dark? Does he wonder at our commitment when we only seem to “root” for him when all is well, and it is easy to do?
God wants us to be all in. He wants us to be super fans, totally focused on his awesome grace and all-consuming power. He wants us to buy the jersey and convert the room! He wants nothing less than complete devotion and praise with each breath of our lives. He is after all, the most winning coach of all time.
So, let’s be all in!
Let’s keep the fervor of God’s victories alive in our thoughts and actions each day.
Let’s cheer loudly from the bleachers, not only on Sundays, but every day of the week.
Let’s share with everyone around us all about our amazing team and recruit as many new fans to the winning side as we can.
Let’s remember that God is worthy of our Praise. Worthy of our devotion. Worthy of our worship. Steadfast in his love and devoted in his grace.
We have so much to celebrate.
Let’s not be TEMPORARY fans.