Ready for football?

The Wallstreet Journal once studied several NFL games. They compared the average watch time to actual playing time. Their conclusion was that an average NFL broadcast lasts about three hours. The amount of actual football action is less. Way less.

Over the years, I’ve read different numbers. But they are all close. Within a typical three-hour broadcast, expect eleven to eighteen minutes of actual football action. Yes, only eleven to eighteen minutes of your favorite team playing.

Now, you could say that all the commentary, time outs and non-action elements are a part of the game. I would listen to you, but I wouldn’t buy it. No one’s getting excited about a time-out. For the most part, I don’t even turn up the volume when I watch a game.

So, what does this silly illustration mean for us today?

Well, imagine for a moment you’ve gone through a serious illness. It lasted a while and for a moment the thought was you might die. But you didn’t. In fact, you experienced a restoration. You weren’t only healed, which would have been great enough, your life was renewed!

Or maybe it wasn’t an illness but a desperate situation. Either way, you can appreciate the feeling of having your life back. That’s what happened to the psalmist in Psalm 116. The psalmist understood that God inclined to hear his pain and suffering. Yes, the ear of Almighty God stretched to hear the psalmist at his lowest point of life.

What was his response to God’s hearing? He said, “Because God inclined his ear to me, therefore I will call on him as long as I live.”

As long as I live.

That’s the phrase that brings joy to me today. I have a lifetime to praise God. Some might take that to mean, when I’m done doing all I want to do in life, I still have time to praise God. Truth be told, God would still be good to you. But we know there’s more joy in living life in communion with God now.

Some might believe life with God is about a one-hour time of worship on Sunday. But that’s like making a big deal about twenty minutes of football. God offers us so much more. There is so much more. Jesus called it abundant life. As long as we live, God offers us faith, hope and love. We can experience God’s grace, mercy and power each moment we have breath.

Knowing how God has blessed you, don’t ever tire of calling on God.

Stay blessed…john

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John Fletcher

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