God along the Touchline
In a split second. In the blink of an eye. I can be changed. Do I believe this?
I have been the kind of person who, okay religiously, sits before God and “does devotions” each morning and then launches out into my day. This blog is part of the product of that time. But the God-presence in my day falls off in a rather steep decline after that. Unless…
I keep checking back. Now in soccer (perhaps other sports, too, but I know it in soccer), this is what is expected of players on the field when there is a thrown in. They “check back” to the player inbounding the ball and then make a run into the play. This constant movement creates opportunity and it confounds the opponent.
I believe God is such a God. Can I call Him God of the throw in? He’s got a ball to freshly inbound all the time. At any time during my day I can check back. In an instant, a split second. At the moment I am tempted to say what I shouldn’t, do what I shouldn’t, think what I shouldn’t I can check back. He’s still there. Hasn’t left the building or the field. Just waiting for me to check back. Maybe even calling out to me, “Check back!!”
And God’s got a ball for each of us.
It is tempting just to put my head down and barrel through my game, through my day. Try to speed past opponents, beat defenders. Hope the ref didn’t see my handling of the ball. Maybe get off a shot on goal or two. But I think He has another game plan. He wants me to keep checking in. To look to Him for the other option. Over and over, to create a rhythm that goes: play the game — check back — play the game — check back.
Not just when I’m out of options but at each turning point moment, each decision point, each little dig that says ‘this doesn’t feel right’ or ‘there I go again’ or ‘should I or shouldn’t I?’ Again and again in my day. To recognize those sticking places where I keep getting off track and give them to Him immediately. Nope, not that. Yes, this. I want to wear out the field in that check back path.
Except, of course, I wouldn’t because God is not about the standing still. He stays with me and moves down the sidelines as play proceeds. So when I look up He’s there with my option.
For those of us who feel the weight of the game heavily on our shoulders, I am beginning to think it’s okay to shoulder the burden. Someone has to take responsibility for making a difference on the field. Once we cross the touchline (the sideline) onto the field of play, we’re meant to play it. We’re switched on.
Interesting they called it the touchline. The place we can keep checking back for the touch of God on our lives. Live action.