Monday, March 23, 2009

March 23, 2009 - Thankful for the Sub!

We are in the midst of March Madness and folks are pulling for their teams, cheering for underdogs, witnessing some amazing play (and some not-so-amazing play.) It is a time where some players become heroes and some become goats.

On Thursday I was watching the Memphis Tigers play. After all the media concerning if they deserved a number 1 or a number 2 seed in the tourney, they came out and played a very poor game. 15th-seeded Cal State came out aggressive and took it straight at the Tigers, nearly pulling off a huge upset.

This game was of interest to me because I had the privilege of coaching one of the Memphis players – Doneal Mack. Every game he plays I am anxious to see how he will do. This particular game – on the big stage of March Madness – Doneal stunk it up. he not only didn’t shoot well (0-7), he also appeared tentative on passes and wasn’t up to his usual defensive prowess. I over and over stated that he looked like he was asleep out there. (And he wasn’t the only Tiger that appeared that way.)

Fortunately for Memphis a player off the bench was hot. Sophomore Robert Sallie scored 35 points, including 10-15 shooting from behind the arc.

[Side note: Doneal rebounded well and scored 17 points Saturday in Memphis’ win over Maryland – including 5-7 behind the arc!]

The thing that jumped out at me was a remark Doneal made after the bad game. He talked about how bad he had played followed by “thank God for Rob Sallie!” It is great when in spite of our failures there is a sub that picks us up.

Are you thankful for the Sub that “picked you up”? Oh I know that you will answer yes, but I mean really thankful! I know we rejoice when we hear the truth of the Gospel but does it affect how we live our lives? The Apostle Paul said that this truth transformed how he lived.

20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.” (Galatians 2)

Christ loves you! Christ gave Himself for you! His grace is the greatest motivating factor in the world for serving God!

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