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Friday, August 4, 2017

The Winning Team!


As I was helping my wife get ready for bed last night, I found that I could hardly keep my eyes off the TV in our bedroom.  Being as I am a San Francisco Giants baseball club fan living on the east coast, I have to watch the live broadcasts from the west beginning at ten in the evening our time!  To be honest, that was the entire reason that we purchased a little TV for the bedroom a couple of years ago!  Now I can lie in bed and watch the games before turning off the light for the night.

But I noticed that something was different last night.  After I had spoken the Word of God over Piper, prayed with her and then tucked her in, I realized that I was in a really good mood.  As I stepped into the bathroom to get myself ready for bed with my MLB app live streaming the game on my phone so I wouldn’t miss one play, it dawned on me… I was happy because the Giants were not only winning… but were winning big time! (the final score was 11-2, Giants over the A’s!)

You must understand that this has been a terribly disappointing season for my team.  I have continued to watch their games, but after a while losing gets a little old… you know what I mean?  I guess that I am just a bit spoiled as they have had a championship contending team for many years and this year’s efforts were quite opposite to what I have grown to expect!  So, their hitting on all cylinders last night was quite pleasurable.

Once I finally laid down on top of the bed to really get into the game, I had the sudden thought that it is a lot more fun to be part of a team that is winning than it is to be with one that is losing.  Now I know… most of you are probably saying “Well, Duh!”  But think about it for a moment in the context of your daily life…  As a Christian you and I are part of a winning team… and I can’t think of a better association to have… can you?

That thought immediately brought to mind a very familiar scripture found in 2 Corinthians 2:14.  The Message Bible renders this verse of Paul’s bold proclamation “Thank God!  In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade.  (And) through us, he brings knowledge of Christ.  Everywhere we go people breathe in the exquisite fragrance.”

I mean, just think about it for a moment… The Bible, the written Word and will of God for us, His children, declares unapologetically that IN CHRIST we have the ability to walk in victory anywhere we go!  Well, my Giants may not be having a Victory Parade through downtown San Francisco this year… but the infallible Word of God tells us that as members of the Christian team, we will march from one place to another in one perpetual VICTORY parade!

And you know… when I watched the Giants World Series Victory Parade in 2014, there was lots of noise in the streets, lots of happy, exuberant on-lookers and a whole world of baseball fans around the country that KNEW that the San Francisco Giants were the undisputed champions that year!

2 Corinthians 2:14 also infers that this is a similar reaction that the people around us will have when they see our victories IN CHRIST.  We most likely won’t be in an actual parade, but the amazement of our victories over the things that come against us each day in our lives, and our attitudes of joyful but yet humble adoration of the One who has led us in these victories will be seen and heard and be like a sweet fragrance to them!  According to Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries, the word translated “victory” or “triumph” depending on the translation, means “to make an acclamatory procession,” which the Oxford Online Dictionary defines as “a loud and enthusiastic approval, typically to welcome or honor someone or something.”

In other words, those who know you through daily interactions, will take note of the victories that you keep having and come to see, hear and smell them as loud, very vivid and fragrant demonstrations of Jesus Christ… and thereby draw them to Him… through you!

So yea… I like being associated with a winning team… Don’t you?  What colors will you be wearing this weekend?  For me, it will most likely be my new black and orange SF Giants hat along with a smile and an encouraging word that will show forth the goodness of the victories that I have IN CHRIST!

Have a victorious weekend, and as you do, keep asking yourself… “Whose victorious team am I expecting to be actively participating with today?”

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