It was my first time ever playing in an organized football game. I was in the 7th grade, stood 5’6” and weighed 135lbs. For some reason, coach thought my best position was center. If you don’t know what that means, the center is the guy who gets the ball to the quarterback and he’s also the guy who usually has to try to stop the other team’s biggest and strongest guy! Before the first play of the game, I remember standing over the football looking at this “kid,” who resembled a mini freight train, lining up in front of me. I guess I must have shown that I was nervous because my teammate, David, said something. David was our team’s biggest and strongest player; in fact, he was probably the biggest guy on the field. David was lined up right next to me and he whispered, “Don’t worry Nate. I got him.” I wish I could say we won that game but we didn’t. What I can say is I don’t ever remember having to deal with that guy in front of me because David took care of him the whole game. That day, I was so thankful for teammates who had my back. I easily forget that I still have teammates today– they just aren’t wearing football pads.
Today we live in a society where we value isolation and independence. Could it be that the thing we value is the very thing that’s actually harming us? Two words Jesus often used to describe the church are: body and family. Those words hint that we’re not isolated beings. They imply an interdependence we’ve been wired with when God created us.
The reality is that life is the toughest game we’ll ever play. The great news is that we have a great Coach in our Heavenly Father and we have teammates who have our backs… if we’re willing to reach out and ask for them. Oftentimes, the things holding us back from making meaningful relationships are fear of rejection and our pride. If we’re willing to push past those, we will start to truly experience life the way it was intended.
CALL TO ACTION
Take some time right now and evaluate your relationships. Answer the following questions and consider taking the next step.
If you needed to reach out to someone at 2am, are there two people in your life you could call on at that time?
Has God placed some godly people around you that you need to start to form a relationship with?
Within the next week, take the initiative and reach out to 2-3 people. Call them and ask them if there’s anything you can be agreeing with them in prayer for. Then follow up with them within a week and ask if there’s anything new. They’ll probably ask you if you have any requests as well. You might be surprised at how that relationship starts to grow. ☺
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” — Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NIV
“Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” — Hebrews 10:25 NIV
“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” — Proverbs 27:17 NIV