My son really loves football! His football season has recently ended, and he is already looking ahead to next year.
But this post isn’t really about football. Even if you care nothing about football, this is so good and I hope and pray you will read to the end. God has something very special to teach us and it has moved me to tears!
But first, in order to get where we’re going, you need the background. You need to know-
The football part…
My son is the center this year. This is a new position for him so he is spending countless hours practicing, improving, and learning all he can. He’s doing great, not only through my own “mom eyes” but others have commented how well he’s been doing especially given it’s his first time in this position. I’m so proud of his hard work and incredible attitude. He wants to be the best he can be and never gives up!
I have been learning a lot too. I enjoy football and, over the years, I’ve picked up the basics. After all, it invades and completely takes over my home for at least half the year, every year, for the last 21 years. Add in two teenage boys and their friends and well…I’ve learned a lot about football, the good, the bad, and the smelly.
But I have a new respect for the center as a position, and I am in awe for what God has been teaching me.
It has been fascinating to learn how integral this position is to the team. We tend to know the names of running backs, wide receivers, and everyone knows the name of the quarterback. He is the one we think of as responsible for success or failure. A lot of responsibility and pressure falls on him and he will get all the glory…or all the blame! But he’s not alone.
Before the quarterback ever touches the ball, it must go through the center’s hands—every single time! If the center doesn’t do his job, the play is dead before it ever had a chance. It all starts with the center. I have a new respect for him and his position.
Jesus is the Center
Watching practice one night, God took this deeper for me. He spoke to my heart and took my breath away. “I am your center.”
Okay, please go with me here…Yes, Jesus is to be the center of our lives. We sing it, we know it, we pray for it…but what does that really mean?
Jesus must be first.
He is the single most important aspect of absolutely everything—our success or failure, not in a game, but for eternity depends on our acceptance of Him into our life!
The very first step is accepting Him as our Lord and Savior. Without Him, nothing else matters and we are doomed to an eternity of sadness and pain.
Is He Lord of your life? If not, please don’t go further without meeting Him. Invite Him into your life and accept His gift of forgiveness and eternal life. Oh, the joy and peace that He brings—don’t wait! Ask Him to be your Lord and Savior. I promise you will never, ever regret it!
And our transformation doesn’t stop with salvation. In Christ, we are a brand new creation. The old is gone, the new has come…and the new is oh so beautiful!
He must be first!
To grow and mature in Christ, we must surrender our desires and give Jesus His rightful place front and center. He must be first in every way. We must surrender our hearts, thoughts, desires…all that we are to Him, and He will mold us into beautiful reflections of Himself.
He is transforming us, day by day, moment by moment, into glorious new creations when He is first in every way.
Only Jesus is the Center
Jesus is the center…only Jesus. Anything we place above Him is an idol and must be removed from our lives.
Imagine if a football team decided to have 3 centers playing at the same time. The quarterback falls back, yells “Hike,” and three balls come flying at him at once. I doubt he would catch even one much less make a great play!
Just as there can be only one center in football, there is only one center to your life—and it must be Jesus! Only in Him do we have peace, joy, and victory.
Jesus is your Protection
Once the center hands the ball to the quarterback, he will do everything he can to protect the quarterback. As a massive, strong, often angry player charges ahead intent on squashing the quarterback, the center stands in the way and takes the brunt of the impact. He is focused on protection so the quarterback can fulfill his purpose.
Jesus stands between you and the enemy’s flaming arrows. He surrounds you with His love and fiercely stands guard over you. He has armies of angels with orders to protect.
God has designed you for a very special purpose, He has gifted you to fulfill it, and He is standing guard to protect you from the enemy trying to stop you–now it’s up to you to practice and and work hard to achieve it. You are not alone and He will never leave you. When He is first and you follow His leading, He will bring victory. That’s pretty amazing!
One final thought~
In football, the center will occasionally fail, allowing the quarterback to be sacked. Jesus never fails. Does that mean we will never face hardship? Not at all. This world is still fallen and subject to sin until the day Jesus returns. But, God will use our pain and suffering to grow us into maturity, and His peace is strongest when our struggle is the hardest.
God’s peace is truly beyond understanding when we are facing the worst. I have previously shared about our oldest son’s health struggles and about God’s incredible peace and healing. I know what it is to choose to trust God with the life of my child. I know all too well the depth of surrender when choosing to trust God when there seems to be no earthly hope. I also know the limitless depth of God’s peace in those painful times.
Whatever you are facing right now, whatever your trial, struggle, or hardship–you are not alone. Jesus offers peace, comfort, even joy through the pain–trust Him, make Him center of your life, and watch Him do amazing, miraculous things!
Lord Jesus, be my Center.
Lord, You are first. Reveal every area of my life that is elevated above You and give me the courage and strength to surrender completely to You. You, and only You, are my Lord, Savior, and King.
Direct my life—the direction, the speed, the velocity—every detail of my life happens only because of You. Direct me on a straight, narrow path that pleases You and leads to victory.
Protect me from the approaching enemy who is trying to destroy me. Stand guard in his way and block and deflect his every attempt to hurt me.
Control every moment. Make sure I am standing correctly, fulfilling my purpose, and would You direct my every step.
Above all, Jesus, would You be glorified in my life, and may my every thought, every word, every action bring me closer to You, and bring You glory.
With love and thanksgiving,
I would be honored to pray for you! If you have a need, feel free to share it and know that I will faithfully lift you in prayer. I hope you will join me on facebook or leave me a comment here and let me know how Jesus is working in your life and we can encourage each other as we grow in Him.