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The Games We Play

What do sports tell us about ourselves? Would we be as interested if the games we play ended without a winner, or without records of comparative accomplishment?

There must be something about everything from board and card games to individual and team sports that awakens something in us that was created by God.

But what are those capacities? Why competition? Could there be any counterpart in the life to come? Or is this all about our fallen nature and need to win at the expense of others?

The Apostle Paul alluded to the Isthmian Games that were an ancient counterpart to our modern Olympic Games (1Cor 9:24-27).  Was trying to remember whether Jesus made any reference to sport but could only think of his statement, “What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul (Matt 16:26)– which am guessing is a stretch.

I’m hoping to see how Michigan State does against Penn State this afternoon. But why? Is it just to be part of the conversation? Is it home-state pride? An answer to boredom? Self-indulgence? A needed change of pace? Am guessing, depending on the situation,  it could be any of these, none of the above, and more…

PS—At this  point I’ll punt to our Sport Chaplain, Bill Crowder, who together with some of our co-workers produce each week an hour-long Sports Spectrum radio program. With the help of their guests, they  look at the way the issues of our lives show up in the games we play or watch. You can find some of their inspiring stories and good conversation at sport.org.


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33 Responses to “The Games We Play”

  1. poohpity says:

    It would be nice to be in a quiet humble competition of loving others and doing good works. Not to get credit for it from anyone but because of the love we have for God. Wow that would be a game of competition with no comparison.

    I do not know why we as human beings have to be in competitive sports or any other competition other than it gives a sense of accomplishment to be the best. It is not just sports but this happens in many areas of life. Someone always wants to be better than someone else but that would then mean some else is less than or not good enough. I think I has to be a pride issue.

    With sports or anything else if an individual will do their best then there is nothing to compete against is there? Job well done is the best I can hope for and no games involved in that. :-) Go Christian Soldiers!!!!

  • poohpity says:

    “I think I has to be a pride issue.” error It should have been “I think it has to be a pride issue”. Shows to go ya don’t it. lol. Maybe a Freudian slip!! ;-)