This may be a post that I pull down later. Or maybe it will strike a chord. I guess we’ll see.
I just scanned my Facebook and Twitter accounts, and I noticed scores and scores of posts about football. It must be Saturday in the fall. It’s good to see college pride extending 5 years, 10 years, 20 years. And I can relate—I have a great affinity for my college (Air Force Academy), although I can’t say it’s because of football. Football is great. It brings people together, it provides athletes with a place to use their talents, it provides jobs for thousands of people.
But I wonder if there’s a danger here too. Not just with football, but with anything that captures our time and energy and excitement week after week.
I suppose part of the question is about our identity. We think of ourselves as teachers, or engineers, or writers, or stay-at-home moms, or whatever it may be. And maybe part of how we see ourselves is as an Ohio State fan, or a USC fan, or a UT fan, or a Texas fan, or an Air Force fan. And it’s good and fine to be a fan.
But there’s some danger in misplaced identity. Identity breeds purpose, and purpose gives way to priorities, and priorities guide our use of time. Which is short, and a gift, and meant to be used in ways that shock our imagination and awaken wonder within us, as well as in ways that quietly evidence a life on a mission.
However we see ourselves, our greatest identity is in Jesus. God is making us into the image of Christ. We are His beloved, His chosen, His sheep, His friends, His brothers and sisters. I guess I would ask myself this question, and you as well if you think it fits: what does my heart say about my identity, and what does my use of time say about my identity?
At the end of the day, there’s nothing wrong with watching football or pulling for your team, so long as you don’t love it more than Jesus.