Sunday, January 11, 2009

Shine Your Light

For women, I would expect one of the great joys in motherhood comes when daughters join you in what you enjoy doing.  Perhaps it is baking, perhaps it is shopping or getting dolled up to go somewhere.

In the past couple of months, our six year old son, Alex, has taken a liking to watching football with me.  It makes me smile.  Something in me has gotten excited to sit down on the weekend and watch football with my son, passing on one of the great passions of my life to our only boy.

He is like a sponge, too.  He asks a billion questions and wants to learn, which is fun.  During stretches of the game, like right now, he puts on one of his helmets and mimics what he sees going on during the game - motioning like the quarterback who sees a blitz coming - running and sliding for a first down.  Stuff like that.  It is awesome.

One a humorous note, like his dad, Alex really doesn't care much for losing.  Sometimes if we are watching a game where I really don't care what the outcome is, we change who we are rooting for in the final 15 seconds to avoid the tantrum that can accompany losing!

Thursday night I had to be out of town at a local high school basketball game with our oldest children - the night of the big BCS championship game between Oklahoma and Florida.  Thanks to modern technology, I DVR'd the game so that Alex and I could watch it later.

On Friday after school, we watched the first half.  The conversation at the start of the game went something like this.

"We are we cheering for, Dad?" asked Alex.

"Florida," I said.

"Why the Gators, Dad?  Don't we like the red team?

"We like the red team okay, Alex, I'm just cheering for the Gators."

"Okay, me too!"

"Great," I said.

"Why are we cheering for the Gators, Dad?"

"Well, we're cheering for the Gators because their quarterback, Tim Tebow loves Jesus."

"Oh," said Alex.  "I love Jesus, too, Dad."

"I know," I said.

"How do we know that Tebow loves Jesus?" asks Alex.

"I have heard and read a lot about him, Alex, and see his face, he has Bible verses on his eye-black?!?"

After explaining what eye-black is, why players use it and everything else that goes along with that topic, the conversation continues.

"Dad, does the red team's quarterback love Jesus?"

"Why, I don't know," I said.  "He might, I just don't know."

"Why don't we know?" asks Alex.

"Because he doesn't tell us, son."


Makes me think a little bit about this life we are living.  Do we tell people we love Jesus?  Do they see that we love Jesus?  Are we bashful about who He is and how much we love our Savior?  Are we leading others to Him?

Matthew 5:13-16 reads like these words:
"You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.  You are the light of the world.  A city on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

A bridge in one of my favorite songs by Hillsong entitled, Mighty to Save, goes like this:
"Shine your light and let the whole world see, we singing, for the glory of the risen King, Jesus!"

Tebow and the Gators won the game, which was fun for Alex and I to see.  Even more, it was awesome to see a picture on leading up to the BCS title game with him having Philippians 4:13 on his eye black, and then to see John 3:16 on his face during the title game. Every single time Florida ran a play, there it was for the whole world to see.

A two-time national champion and Heisman Trophy winner isn't hiding his light under a bowl...neither is a six year old boy in a living room in northwest Iowa.

Are you?  Do I?

May we be a people whose love for Jesus is evident to those we come in contact with - everyone we come into contact with.  Not just at church on Sunday, but on Monday when the going is getting tough!  May our light shine bright and it be so obvious to all that one might think we were wearing eye-black testifying to God's greatness.

The Steelers game is coming on.  Know what question I have been answering in the past day-and-a-half?  

"Dad, does Ben (Roethlisberger, the Steelers quarterback) love Jesus?"

Grace and Peace,



janelle said...

You, Chris, definitely love Jesus every day of the week!

Anonymous said...

I have boys so I have put most girlie things aside and joined the bandwagon for football. Really loved Tim Tebow's proclamation to Jesus. I don't know many 'famous' people who would proclaim their love of Jesus in front of millions. He is an amazing young man!!! Also saw the game tonight between the Steelers. Good question from your son. I enjoy reading your posts.
Peace and Blessings...

Jennifer said...

Good job, Dad, ever-pointing toward your Father, with a "little brother" on your lap.

Billy Coffey said...

I've been a Tebow fan for a while now for that very reason. And my own son has spent many a night on my lap watching the Yankees.

You gotta raise 'em right, don't you?

patty said...

I was just singing that song...thinking about my light and hoping it's bright! Thanks for another great reminder, Chris.

Matt @ The Church of No People said...

Hey Chris - I just came across you blog. Hope that's all right. Great story! Watching your kids take an interest in what you do must be great. God bless and happy blogging!

Kay Martin said...

Man, you can write! I was laying on the floor in front of the TV with you and your son!!!

Whenever my children began to emulate anything I did or wanted to "be" like Mom I prayed... oh, God, cover me and don't let me lead them astray. What power and influence we hold as parents, grandparents, godparents, etc.

I mentor several wonderful young saints. When they come to me wanting me to mentor them I make sure early on I warn them of my real human condition. I tell them I am a beat-up, rusty, old arrow and to be sure to look in the direction I am pointing and don't pay so much attention the arrow.

Yes...the question is just what you son asked: Do they know Jesus? Is He Lord of their lives?

I will keep reading here; just maybe some of your writing gift will seep into my brain and I will flow with some words that "live."

Peter P said...

I was about to sit down and blog about this very subject. Can't remember how I found your blog but I'm sure glad I did!

The thing I've found is that you can hide your light under a bushel.... but you can't hide the bushel!

Great post.


Steph said...

Neat post, Chris! Reminds me of my house. Thanks for sharing and reminding to never hide your light or lose the saltiness!