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The Faith message can also be found on the Gridiron where brawn and brains come together for the common goal of finding the end zone.

Of course not everyone likes football or understands what the fuss is about. My wife kept asking what's the big deal every April where everyone gets together for The NFL Giraffe? What in the blazes does a Giraffe have to do with football, and why does anyone flippin dippin care? (see NFL Draft commentary)

Of course there is no Giraffe, but there is an NFL Draft. Don't feel bad Mary, lots of people have made the same mistake. <pause> NOT!

On the flip side are the die hard FANatics...
we find those fanatics who show more crazy passion over thier team then they do any other part of their lives. While this statement is not true about me, I still will confess that I have a cheesehead in honor of MY Green Bay Packers, and wear it from time to time BUT my life is bigger than football or EVEN my beloved Green & Gold. BLESSED ARE THE CHEESEMAKERS.. or was it peacemakers

While not everyone shares my wife's oblivious bliss to the interworkings of football, or in contrast the passion of a FANatic. I do come back to the fact that Football and Faith go together like a Tom Brady to Randy Moss post pattern that splits the seam of the defense.

Let me share how.

Football is.. the competition of two teams comprised of players, and coaches on a field nicknamed the 'Gridiron' working together much like the Bible talks of the Body of Christ. One team comprised of many players for the single purpose of a team victory! One church (the body of Christ) many parts all working together for the Glory of God.

Let me share a few parts of the above mentioned team as found in the Back Pew.

CENTER: You have a Center who promises not be raptured during gametime unless he takes the rest of the team with him.
LINEMAN: Big time players who can't get their big guts off the field in their 5 Point Stance
COACH: Remember an Angry Coach makes for a Sad Player
QUARTERBACK: QBs are chased and harried all while praying Psalms for peaceful days and avoiding the dreaded Sack attck.
RETURN SPECIALISTS: Are blessed with good hands, and a short memory forgetting the sins of past fumbles and losses.

THE BLITZERS: Are those who throw their adrenaline juiced bodies full speed to mame the above mentioned quarterbacks.

NOSE TACKLES: plugging holes on the road to the endzone.. BIG, BAD, and MEAN.

Also, football is a place where we should all learn to GET ALONG.. but in the gridiron version of THE GOOD SAMARITAN we find a couple examples where GET ALONG while playing football is not so easy.

We have the GOOD BEAR SAMARITAN, the GOOD SAMARITAN CHEESEHEAD , the GOOD SAMARITAN VIKING. Also we have the ongoing spiritual dilemma in CHICAGO
... and besises these goodie goodies we have fan reps from the NFC north who are.. READY FO SUM FOOTBALL

There are also lessons learned as another season comes to an end..

Officials (The Zebras): Gridiron Zebras can be found roaming the open plains of football fields across the country every fall, and then most go back into hibernation in the winter months.

In the Animal Kingdom Zebras are not safe standing alongside such carnivores as Lions, Bears, and Bengals.
In the Girdiron Kingdom Zebras are tolerated, and while the above mentioned carnivores may growl and sneer at them there NEVER has been a recorded case of a Zebra being EATEN. Chewed out.. yes, eaten? No.

In the Gridiron Kingdom, Zebras are called on to maintain order in this often violent game of human bumper cars. While Zebras are typically inferior physical specimens to the players on the field they maintain order armed only with whistles and flags. Using the above mentioned whistles and flages Zebras can manage moving herds (if 11 players is a herd) forward and backward by assessing Penalties deemed necessary. This has to be a God thing like much like when Gideon won a great battle armed with only Jars & Trumpets.

Much like Siegried & Roy these zebras enforce their wills on herds of Lions, and Tigers, and Bears .. oh my! Of course while Roy was once near fatally bitten by a Tiger, but the worst I can recall happening to a zebra on the gridiron is when they find themselves at the wrong place at wrong time OUCH!

and.. while most zebras are respected, others are not and as many of us have expressed in unspoken thoughts .. Old Officials never die.. you just wish they would.

In the end.. Victories are celebrated in the Bible with an annointing of Perfume while in football.. we opt instead for Gatorade like baptisms. AND.. when naming your team it is bad enough to be the Minnesota 'gophers' (a mighty rodent?), but just be glad no one is calling your team the fighting Pansies?

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(1) Love God.. love others.. Mt. 22:37-39 (2) Trust God with all your heart.. Pr. 3:5-6
The Lord is my Shepherd.. Ps.23 (4) Dwell on what is true, honorable, and pure.. Phil 4:8


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