I want to be clear – the Table endorses no (or every) sports team, and really, in the grand scheme of things, we don’t spend much time talking about sports as we gather at God’s table every Sunday.
Still, we are excited and hopeful about the Mavs trip to Miami to seal their first championship in franchise history.
With the launch of blogs like Grantland, it’s clear that sports in their totality play a huge cultural role. I don’t think Ray Lewis is that far off base when he made his comments not too long ago about the possible cultural effects of an NFL lockout. People live through sports. Sports provides us with conversation, belonging, motivation, fun, and maybe even distraction.
And the thing I both like and dislike about the way we scrutinize sports in the US is the media’s determination to find story lines. We want to see these games as more than just a bunch of skilled athletes and their coaches trying to put themselves in the best position to win. We want to see this struggle as something akin to good versus evil, the good guys versus the bad guys, the scrappy underdogs against the overconfident champions.
It’s still just a sports game – a bunch of highly paid, extremely talented guys playing at the top of their level.
And yet it’s more – a big shot in an unlikely moment, a flash of impossible talent in a critical second, and a sense of the miraculous before our very eyes.
Look, human beings can do amazing things. Let’s not kid ourselves. That’s why we watch sports – that’s why we live through them – that’s why we make something more of them than we probably should.
I am capable. You are capable. Together, we are powerful.
In my life, I don’t find that at the basketball rim (though I wouldn’t mind it if I found it there too).
I find it and am reminded of it in the presence of God.
May we all find that place that reminds us that we can do the amazing too.