Interactive Sermon

"Those who have the disease called Jesus will never be cured" ~Old Russian Proverb

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Faith & Football

This article on Colts Coach Tony Dungy and a number of his players mentioning their faith in Christ in connection with their football season is worth a read. The conversation that was certain to be all about race - this Super Bowl featured the first two African American Head Coaches to reach the game - has moved more so the direction of faith. Both Coaches and many of their players are devout Christians.

A few thoughts came to mind as I read the article: (1) Concerning the comment at the end of the article "These people were hired to coach, not promote their private religious values" - I don't hear anyone telling Oprah Winfrey that... or Bono... or Sean Penn... etc. (2) I wonder: Should one separate their personal values from their career? I believe the Irsay family hired Tony Dungy, in large part, for his personal values. (3) I am really thankful for the last few paragraphs of the article. You see, for many the first encounter they've had with Tony Dungy is his post game words about his faith. I am among the many, however, who have seen his faith on display since he became the Buccaneers coach in 1996. I've seen his faith in the midst of the good, the bad and the tragic. That's what's telling to me.

So, what do you think? Is it right for these believers to speak out about their faith? Is Dungy crossing a line? Were you offended?

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Monday, February 05, 2007

What A Night!

Great Super Bowl event - even brokenhearted Patriot fans have to agree.

Congratulations Vicki for the winning chili entry! Congratulations Pam for winning the big drawing!

As a lifelong Buccaneers fan, I couldn't lose last night in the actual game itself - two coaches in Tony Dungy and Lovie Smith with Buccaneer ties. In the end, I wound up rooting for Dungy and the Colts - and I was thrilled to see Tony Dungy's post game interviews. What a great guy!

The highlight of the night for me may be Prince's halftime show. Not since U2 truly blessed us all with their 9/11 tribute halftime show in January 2002 has the Super Bowl halftime production been this good. I tried to make out the different pieces of Prince's 12 minute performance (including a dancing marching band... gave me ideas for Easter Sunday at CCA). To my recollection it included the following: We Will Rock You (Queen), Let's Go Crazy, Baby I'm A Star, Proud Mary (made famous by Ike & Tina Turner), All Along The Watchtower (made famous by Jimi Hendrix), and Purple Rain. There was another tune in there I couldn't make out. Anyone remember it? All I can say, it was a knock-out performance in a driving rain.

Unfortunately I didn't manage to catch any of the commercials - I used those breaks to refill my chili bowl, or to get a drink refill to put out the fire from the chili bowls.

What did you think? Game? Halftime? Favorite commercials?

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Friday, February 02, 2007

Super Bowl Storylines

As the Super Bowl (and Christ's Church's annual Super Bowl Party and Chili Cook-Off) draws near, the football fan in me is loving every minute of it.

If you've been watching the players press conferences this week, you've no doubt noticed the very different tone. There are zero of the brazen personalities, no arrogant statements, and no self-aggrandizement. There have been no rumors of Colts or Bears players carrying on at wild parties. There have been no arrests. Just respectful and gentlemen players and coaches. It's driving the media crazy!

Make no mistake about it - this is a reflection of the Head Coaches of these two teams. Their demeanor has settled into their entire organizations.

I ran across this story this morning that illustrates my point. It was a painful day for me as a Bucs fan when in Tony Dungy and his offensive staff were let go after the 2001 season. But note the story from Clyde Christensen's perspective. Note how they both see God's hand to have been in this.

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