It’s been a super day. It began with a moving and emotional pastoral message, followed by an enriching Sunday school class during which my husband volunteered us to perform a skit unbeknownst to me. The class verdict on our performances is that they were Oscar-worthy. Who knew we were closet Thespians? After services, we collected one of our teens who’d returned to church from a weekend retreat, gathered the rest of the crew, including my youngest daughter’s BFF, and went on a family outing to a local skating rink. What a fun time and sweat-inducing workout! Hopefully, I burned off enough calories from lunch to feel less guilty about taking the easy way out – pizza for the third time this week!
Today is day five of a month of publicly expressing thankfulness for random things. Today’s random gift for which I am thankful? My love for football. As I sit here now watching Superbowl XLVI, I can’t help but recall memories of countless Sundays in the living room surrounded by the sound of whistles, play-calling, celebrations of victory, and sneers of defeat accompanied a larger than life figure who filled a room with his mere presence – my dad.
My mom is a football fan, but there is just something about watching the game with Dad that brings forth fond memories. Perhaps it was the range of emotions that he showed. Or maybe it was the couch coaching for which he was famously heckled by us kids. Maybe it was the fact that he knew exactly what was going on in a game; I couldn’t have named a play if it hit me in the head. I don’t quite know the exact moment or reason that I became a fan of football. All that I remember is that football reminds me of my dad and I am a huge fan of his. I can’t speak of the sport without thinking of him. I can’t think of John Madden without picturing my dad yelling at the television as superfluous X’s and O’s covered the screen.
Dad has been in Heaven for nearly twenty years, but as I sit here watching the Superbowl, I can vividly imagine him sitting next to me coaching from his heavenly seat. Today, I am thankful for my love of football, because it means so much more to me than a game.
Thank you for blessing me with a dad whose love for You was great, whose unconditional love for me still warms my heart, and whose love for football is the reason I enjoy the game so much. I know that Dad is in Heaven looking down on me and smiling as I recall fond memories of him. Football brings me as close to Dad as any other memory from my childhood. I pray that something I do with my children will bring about the same kinds of fond memories when they think of me. Please keep the players in today’s game physically safe and mentally alert. I pray these things in Jesus’ name, Amen!