Are you a fan of Sunday afternoons and the NFL? Are you a fan of Sabbath mornings and Chapel Oaks? If so, you might be surprised at the similarities between the two! Feeling doubtful? Keep reading, and let me explain!
So what defines a member of the Chiefs Kingdom?
1. First and most of all, they are LOYAL TO THEIR TEAM. Some days may be better, some days may be worse, some days it’s a tough opponent out there. But they stick with their team, face the challenges of each game, and wear the uniform proudly.
As Christians, we should also be loyal to OUR team. Some weeks at church will be better than others. You may not always agree with what you hear, or how things are done. But that doesn’t mean you give up on your team! We face the biggest foe in all the universe on a daily basis,(Heb. 10:23), but with Jesus on our side, we don’t need to waver. Stick with the team!
2. Chiefs fans are a TIGHT KNIT GROUP. They cheer together, and cry together. And sometimes both on the same day. They develop a close bond as members of their Kingdom! Doing things together makes those bonds happen.
God calls us to unite as Christians as well. Paul spent many hours trying to convince the believers of his day that they should support each other. “I want them to be encouraged and knit together by strong ties of love.” (Col. 2:2)
3. Fans of Chiefs Kingdom LIVE AND BREATHE THE CHIEFS. They know the players and the coaches. They understand the rules (well, most of the time) and who the opposing teams are going to be. They all have ideas about what will lead their team to success, and are not shy in sharing.
If we are going to be successful as Christians, we need to live and breathe it each day. Know who your fellow church members are. Talk to the pastors., Read God’s rulebook until you understand it. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. (Joshua 1:8) And when you have ideas about your church, share them!
4. Andy Reid fans RAISE THEIR BANNER HIGH. On game day you’ll see Red all over KC, whether it’s flags in car windows or hoodies at Arrowhead. They want the world to know who they're for!
And we as Christians should be proud to raise the heavenly banner in our lives. We have something far greater to share and be proud of. Jesus has given us a message, not just for Kansas City, but for the whole world to hear. “You are the light of the world…Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (Matt. 5:14, 16)
5. True members of Chiefs Kingdom NEVER GIVE UP ON THEIR TEAM. They had to wait 50 years for their second Super Bowl victory. And there were some really tough years in there! But the loyal fans stayed with it, and when Mahomes and Company finally raised that trophy, it made it all the sweeter because they had never abandoned the cause.
We too face many challenges in life, both inside the church and outside of it. It’s a tough world out there, and the enemies of Christianity are doing their best to make it even tougher. But Christians hold tight to our faith that Jesus will see us through.
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength...they will run and not grow weary ,they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:29-31)
And when He comes back in that shining cloud, oh it will be sweet indeed!
6. Chiefs fans are NOT DEFINED BY GEOGRAPHY. You will find them all over the state, the country, and the rest of world. You may see a Chiefs shirt in Arizona, or US troops watching the Super Bowl in the Middle East, sporting their Chiefs caps and roaring for Patrick Mahomes.
And what about us as Christians? Part of the great challenge for God is to share His gospel TO the whole world. We want to have fans of Jesus everywhere we can! (Mark 16:15)
7. Fans of the Red and Gold ALWAYS LOOK FORWARD TO ONE SPECIAL DAY OF THE WEEK. Where will be they be? How do they watch the game? Who do they watch it with on Sunday? The parking lot opens 4.5 hours before the game, and they aren’t home sleeping, they’re tailgating with their friends!
Our special day of the week is Sabbath, and we get one every week, whether it’s football season or not. Do you look forward to Sabbath like Chiefs fans look forward to Sunday? And while you probably don’t need to be in the church parking lot at 5:00 am on Sabbath morning, you can be there in time for Sabbath School. Think ahead of who you might sit by and how you’ll participate in the service. Or what sandwiches you might bring for potluck.
8. Kingdom members FOCUS ON THE FINAL BIG EVENT. Much as fans enjoy the entire season and are happy to be part of the weekly excitement, there is one final event they look forward to with great anticipation. And that is a victory on Super Bowl Sunday! That is the ultimate goal of every Chiefs Kingdom member.
And we should be focused on what will be, not just a Super Sunday, but one of the greatest events of all time. We haven’t been waiting a whole season, or even 50 years for this – we’ve been waiting 6000 years for Jesus to come back to Earth and win the final victory over Satan. And we never need to give up hope, because Jesus has already guaranteed us that final victory! I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. (John 14:2,3)
The Kingdom of God is real, and it exists now, on this earth. Jesus told us to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.” (Matthew 6:33). We have the privilege of being members of this Kingdom, and more important, we’re sons of the Head Coach! God Himself is calling us to come experience His kingdom today. Do you share the same enthusiasm for God’s Kingdom as you do for Andy’s? I hope so, because that’s what God wants!
Tip of the hat: this blog entry was inspired by a Sabbath School story from Harvey Reynolds of the Kingsville, MO church. - Dave Fairchild