Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Night Football

The summer nights of lingering heat and humidity appear to be over for this year.  What we have, now, are pleasant Friday evenings as we watch high school football.

Friday evening, we watched our high school football team and enormous marching band perform their particular skills wonderfully.  April and I arrived at Etowah High School.  We smuggled our coffee cups past the ticket takers at the gate and sat down anticipating a pleasant night watching our daughter in the color guard and her high school's football team put their undefeated record on the line against the Etowah Blue Devils.

April and I had a couple conversations recently about what we believe God has begun to do around and through us.  We have grown grossly optimistic about where God is leading us and many around us to display His glory and love.  Alleluia!

In the midst of our spiritual joy, even as our team fell behind, April turns to me as we sat in the stands and said, "I feel and sense the angels all over this stadium.  Their surrounding us in this place."  She said this with tears in her eyes and a glow over her face.  As the game progressed, Albertville went ahead, and everything seemed to be as it should be.  Their opponents then took possession on the end of the field where April and I sat.  As the young men competed and our wonderful band played fervently in support of our Albertville Aggies, I looked down at the Blue Devils breaking their huddle, and I felt this great sense of compassion for them and their community.  It was a wave of love and sincere concern for all these folks assembled to cheer on the Etowah squad.  The wave caught me and my emotions were stirred to the point of me whispering the name of Jesus.

On the next down, the wave returned, that wave of compassion for these that I knew and still know that God so loves.  While tears welled up in my eyes, I turned to April, but I couldn't make eye contact with her.  What transpired on the field was a winning touchdown drive for the Blue Devils, but the ultimate score and subsequent mild sense of disappointment was so minor compared to the grace-filled encounters that April and I both had at this game.

After the game ended with a valiant attempt by the Aggies to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, I shared with her what I experienced as I looked on the Etowah team minutes before.  Her mouth feel open and said she was moved to pray for that team at that same time to receive blessings from the Lord.  We both laughed as she said that we shouldn't tell anyone that we might be responsible for the Aggies' defeat, but that we're apparently growing more in sync in the Spirit.

God is at work in us and in many others growing more compassion for those that God so loves.  The uniforms, race or class do not matter to God.  He merely loves, but He's not keeping it there or to Himself.  He's awakening his beloved to feel what He feels.  How cool is that?

Daddy, we love you.  Continue to speak to us as you choose.  When you do, our faith grows as we grow closer to you and to all you love.  Amen.

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