It's almost football season! There's plenty of pigskin stories out there as high school, college, and NFL teams all are getting ready for the start of the 2017 campaign. The Houston Texans played their first preseason game last night and although they lost, enthusiasm is running high after the debut of rookie quarterback, Deshaun Watson. Last weekend, the National Football League held its annual Hall Of Fame induction ceremonies. Canton, Ohio is shrine to the historical and cultural phenomenon which is American football. I don't have cable so I didn't watch- I did hear several of the speeches were very long. As always, the new inductees were tremendous contributors to what is now most likely the most popular spectator sport in this nation.
Last week, I heard an interview with famed ex Green Bay Packer, Jerry Kramer. Author of the best seller Instant Replay, Kramer was a stalwart for the Packer's Super Bowl winning teams under famed coach Vince Lombardi. He was named to the NFL 50th Anniversary Team and to many is the epitome of a football offensive lineman. But, Jerry Kramer has never been elected to the NFL Hall Of Fame, the only player on the NFL Anniversary team to not be so honored. Ironically, many of those associated with pro football assume he is. Kramer related how ex-players ask him if he's going for the annual ceremonies and are shocked to learn he's not a member of the hallowed group. Even NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, whom Kramer has worked with on numerous occasions, was dumbfounded that Kramer is not enshrined. He has to be in the Hall of Fame- he's Jerry Kramer! But he's not.
I once taught a girl who was as close to the perfect student as you can get. Great family, great grades, great personality, great attitude. She'd be on my personal Mount Rushmore Of Students. She was loved by our faculty and adored by her peers. As I have on numerous occasions, I had her class do a writing assignment called All The Good Things where each student anonymously writes the best compliment they can for every other student in their section. I compile these quotations- it takes a very long time!- and give each youngster their composites from their classmates' perspective. I'm not sure I've ever seen a compilation like this young lady's. The twenty or so remarks were filled with adjectives like beautiful/brilliant/kind/compassionate. And as you might expect in a Bible class, there were comments as to what a wonderful Christian she was..... but she wasn't.
Oh, she was kind and compassionate and those other admirable qualities but she wasn't a Christian. Everyone assumed she was but she wasn't. She had never committed her life to Jesus. She wasn't trying to fool anyone. But the good news is that not long after that assignment, she did give her life to the Lord and was baptized into Jesus Christ. Then, what her fellow teens said rang true. She now was truly Christ-like and remains walking in the light, quoting 1st John. Perceptions did not add her name to the Book of Life. That came from her willful obedience and the blood of Jesus washing away her sin. Someday, I hope Jerry Kramer makes it into the Hall of Fame- he's seems like a worthy candidate and many want him there. But there's a more important place to find your name with immortals.And it's not in Ohio.
Applicable quote of the day:
"Lombardi has to have the highest threshold of pain in the world - none of our injuries hurts him at all."
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