Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Will God Repeat?

Five months ago, my Seattle Seahawks marched onto the national stage and practically waltzed away with their first Super Bowl. It's a cathartic and dizzying event for a sports fan, having YOUR team be the champ. The Seahawks are a relatively young franchise, without the storied history of older teams like the Packers, and most of their years have been synonymous with futility. The 90s were most embarrassing. To a lifelong diehard like myself, our Super Bowl isn't just awesome. It's therapeutic.

Yet here were are, five months later, and what are a lot of Seahawks fans doing?

Taking to the internet forums and dissecting the draft, analyzing our player transactions, and worrying. Worrying about what?

Whether we can repeat as Super Bowl champions next year.

Are you kidding me? We fight for almost forty years to get here, finally prove our place amongst the NFL's big boys, finally shut everybody up for nine months, and what do the fans do? We dart on to next year. We start worrying.

You'd think that now, of all times, we'd be taking the time to simply bask in the moment. Swagger around, buy and wear our merchandise, plunk down our emptied mugs of...um, soda...as we proclaim loudly to the...um, establishment...that we're the champs. For at least nine months, we're the undisputed top dogs. Can't we just enjoy it?

Now, yes, part of this worry is the desire to get a Seahawks dynasty going, rather than just a one-off win. I walked up to a guy in church the other day wearing a Broncos hat, deliberately and pointedly adjusted my Seahawks hat with my best mischievous grin, and he just chuckled and went "Yeah, everyone gets lucky once in a while." And we don't want that to be the case. We want to prove that not only did we win, but it wasn't a fluke.

But part of it is...we just forget. The glow fades and it's back to prove-it territory. And I am not immune.

I have just been blessed royally by God. I've gotten a new job for next year and a sweet pad to stay, a treat from his good heart that I wasn't expecting. It was the last-minute culmination of two years of prayer and waiting during which I had to fiercely battle and overcome my doubts about God's heart and attentiveness. (Perhaps that's why God kept me in the game until the last minute?)

And yet now, here I am just four days later, and I catch myself worrying about other things. My car, missions fundraising, how the new job will actually go. You're kidding me. It hasn't been 100 hours and already I'm worrying about the next season? "Yeah, but that was then. What if next time is different?"

Heck, what about the part where I just enjoy what I've been given? God didn't give me a good gift so I'd let other anxieties still the joy away!

Woe is me. My capacity for unbelief rivals the playoff drought of the Cleveland Browns. (That's enormous.)

"My son, observe the commandment of your father and do not forsake the teaching of your mother; bind them continually on your heart; tie them around your neck." - Proverbs 6:20-21

The Pharisees took this verse literally and bound pieces of Scripture around their necks. Whatever other evil they were up to in the Gospels, I actually think they were ahead of me on this one. It helped them remember.

My good friend tells me to build physical altars in my life to remember what God's done for me, touchstones of faith for the next season. I'll do it. It's a simple matter of learning styles, providing visual keys to important things. Could be as easy as taking bright red paint to the key to my new apartment. It'll be hard to miss it then. An excellent, dominant-color reminder of his faithfulness. (And a shortcut to that usual jingling and fumbling on the key ring that typically results in your desired key being the last to be found.)

Next time might be different, but God won't be. He gives us evidence of his power and his love so that we have confidence in him for the next season.

I don't know whether the Seahawks will repeat next year. But I know God will.

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