Tag Archives: college football

The Third String…

Wednesday Wisdom 🙂


Inspiration this week comes from the Gospel of Luke 21: 1-4

The Widow’s Offering: “While Jesus was in the Temple, he watched the rich people dropping their gifts in the collection box. Then a poor widow came by and dropped in two small coins. ‘I tell you the truth,’ Jesus said, ‘this poor widow has given more than all the rest of them. For they have given a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she has.'”


My favorite brunette is a student at Notre Dame University. Her daddy taught her to both love and understand the game of football from the time that she was a little girl. She’s a loyal Fighting Irish fan, and also works as a writing tutor on campus where she helps several of the football players with their studies. She traveled to the game in Chicago last weekend as the team took on Wisconsin, and managed to get an awesome seat in the first row. In the middle of the second quarter, we actually got to see her on TV 🙂

My favorite farmer and I try to be “good Notre Dame parents”. As a life-long Husker, that’s a bit of a stretch for Matt but I’m proud of how he has embraced Ashley Grace’s dreams and the college family that she chose. As we watched the game, it struck me how seamlessly Notre Dame was able to transition from starting quarterback Jack Coan to third string quarterback Drew Pyne when injury plagued the Irish. Drew didn’t miss a beat when coach called him to the field, and his teammates clearly showed up to support him. They had a plan, they believed in each other, and they went to work. They gave everything that they had, and it was enough to lead them to a clear victory of 41-13 when the clock ran out in the 4th quarter. It was pretty clear to me that the Fighting Irish players were unconcerned with the “third string” label as they instead chose to value Drew as a teammate knowing that he was willing to give everything that he had as they fought together for victory.


Our church family is currently doing a fall study entitled “Experiencing God”. God’s placed many different things on my heart as we’ve begun this study, but I think that the most profound is a more complete realization of how much God loves each and every one of us. He doesn’t compare us or label us, instead he pours into us so that we can be in a deep and meaningful relationship with Him. I don’t think God calls any of us “third string”. We are simply the sons and daughters upon whom he bestows an unconditional love that leaves us baffled, yet blessed.

It amazes me what God can do through us when we let Him. He asks us for our love, our trust, our belief, and our obedience. He takes those things and puts them together to create light and goodness. He doesn’t count the coins, He values and empowers the heart that gives all. I am learning to not limit the God who loves me, and trusting that when He calls me to action that as long as I give my all, I will be enough. This helps me to be an active and energetic member of Team Jesus, ready to let God work through me whenever He calls my number 🙂 I am more fully understanding that when I lean into Jesus, I cease to be the “third string” and begin being the one through whom God can bring victory.

When we give our all, it is enough. God blesses it, and then blesses others with it. Today, I am thankful to the Fighting Irish football team for allowing God to work in them and through them to help bring this message deeper into my heart.

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The Holy Spirit and His Play Calling…

Wednesday Wisdom 🙂


Inspiration this week comes from the Gospel of John 16: 13-15

“When the Spirit of Truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future. He will bring me glory by telling you whatever he receives from me. All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, “The Spirit will tell you whatever he receives from me.”


I believed in the Trinity long before I understood it. It’s taken me a while to figure out the particulars, but I’ve had a lifelong relationship with the Holy Spirit. I used to tell my girls when they were little that the Holy Spirit “sits on your shoulder” and gives you direction as you go through the day. Some days I wonder at the Spirit’s perseverance and patience, as I’m not always a very good listener. But then I remember that the Spirit is a part of Jesus – a gift that He left us – so that we could communicate with Him after his resurrection. Jesus is the personification of perseverance and patience, so it’s a natural fit for the Spirit to also have these qualities 🙂

This summer, I participated in a Bible study with a group of middle school and high school girls. Over the course of the months, we read the Gospel of John together. John is my favorite Gospel, likely because of the very clear language regarding the Holy Spirit. I cling tightly to the knowledge that when Jesus is in my heart, the Spirit brings us together in communication as we travel the journey. He’s the messenger that links me to God and Jesus. It was truly awesome to share in the girls’ discussions as they identified with the Holy Spirit through John’s words.


Notre Dame vs Navy with my favorite farmer and our favorite brunette 🙂

If you’re a college football fan, you’ve likely noticed the couple of guys on the sidelines doing all kinds of goofy hand and arm signals as the coach calls in the plays to the team on the field. It’s a silent communication, and one that leaves the rest of us baffled (and perhaps entertained) but we get to see the result of it as the next play unfolds.

The quarterback knows that one of his jobs is to interpret, understand, and execute the play called by those important guys waving their arms on the sidelines. As he interprets the message, he shares it with his teammates and they come together to move the ball down the field. When it works, it’s a thing of beauty.

What if the Holy Spirit talks to us in a similar way?

What if we are the quarterbacks for Team Jesus?

It doesn’t matter if you envision the Holy Spirit sitting on your shoulder, walking beside you, or standing on the sidelines of a football field. What matters is whether you pay close attention to hear the play and are then able to communicate and execute it in love.

Over the years, I’ve noticed a few things that help me to hear and receive the Holy Spirit’s message:

  1. Starting the day with quiet prayer and intentionally asking the Spirit to be with me and guide me.
  2. Keeping my mind focused on the messages that I find in God’s Word as I study the Bible.
  3. Intentionally developing a grateful heart that looks outward to help others.
  4. Looking for the handiwork of the Spirit not just in my life but in the lives of those I love.
  5. Crediting the Spirit for the harmony and blessings that follow my obedience.

Next week as we head into Thanksgiving, I pray that as you gather with your family and friends that the Holy Spirit will take a seat next to you at the table. I guarantee that it will help you to have the attitude of gratitude that brings blessings of joy!

Happy Thanksgiving from the football loving prairie 🙂

 

 

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