I loved my career as a football coach. Is it ok to say that? Does it make me seem worldly to say that? Forgive me Lord, but I loved it. I loved the smell of the battle. I loved the mud. I loved the blood. I loved the human drama of competition. I loved how competition strengthened a man.
Fight or flight was the choice that the frightened young men were forced to face. Will they face their fear and storm the castle, or will they roll up in a cocoon and yield ground to the enemy? Courage is created in the heat of the battle. Facing one’s fear is a necessity for victory in life.
“Kill the will, boys,” I often told them after the halftime break. “They are going to be fired up after the pep talk that their coach just gave them, and we are going to have to go out there and kill the will. We are going to keep the pressure on until they wilt. Victory is earned. You have to take it. Before you can do that, you have to take away their heart.”
“Kill the will boys…there is no other path to victory.”
I can feel it right now. Some of you reading this will find your heart beating a little faster. I feel you, my friend…I feel you. Whatever happened to the fighting spirit inside the Christian man?
They killed the will. Somewhere along the way the enemy killed the will. Passive, sit on your butt, whiney Christianity has turned the average American male into a compliant pile of play dough. The constant attack of the god-haters has pushed men inside the four walls of the church where they cower in fear over what some flaming homosexual might say about them.
There is no exhortation from their pastor to stand up and fight. There is no leader in the huddle motivating them to pound the ball over the goal line. There is no plan for victory over an exceedingly inferior opponent.
‘Churchianity’ makes me want to puke.
Those of you who enjoy football know that there is an old saying that “offense wins games, but defense wins championships.” That may be true to a point, but the truth remains that a team that only plays defense will never win a game. The best they can hope for is a 0-0 tie. At some point, in order to win the game, someone is going to have to pick up the football and ram it across the goal line.
Playing a game to a tie is like kissing your sister. In looks good, but there ain’t much of a thrill to it. Sadly, most Christians today are playing for a tie…hoping to just hang on until Daddy comes to rescue them.
No wonder men have quit going to church. Who wants to play on a team that has no intention of winning? Who wants to engage in a fight where you aren’t able to punch back?
I know, I know…we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood. I get it. Maybe someone should explain that to the god-haters who are mopping the field with us and rubbing our values and our faces into the mud.
I was a little different than the average coach. I focused on the offensive side of the ball. I loved making big plays and scoring touchdowns on the opponent. The way I saw it, playing defense was something you had to do when the other team had the ball. The fans loved to watch the points go up on the board, and I sure loved putting them up there.
Offense wins games. That was my approach. Defense merely prevented losses. I’d much rather play trying to win, than hang on to my rear end trying not to lose.
For the most part, modern Christians have no intention of trying to win. They don’t even know what a touchdown looks like. They think winning is watching one of their friends “suffer for Christ” rather being a “champion for Christ.”
After David slew Goliath, he ran up and sliced of his head. David wasn’t interested in a tie. David wasn’t interested in playing defense. David was interested in “killing the will.” When David sliced that dude up, all of Goliath’s home-boys headed for the hills.
I recall spending many nights preparing for the upcoming opponent with our coaching staff. We’d break down the films, find their tendencies, and prepare a plan of attack. I would look at the game plan and turn to our coaches and say “First one to 30 wins, boys. If they plan on beating us, they’d better be ready to score some points.”
What’s my point? It is that the church has sat around for far too long now playing defense and hoping to somehow stop the opponents from scoring on our team. We compromise, roll over, yield our authority, dance to their tune, and play by their rules. The idea of forcing them to play by our terms never enters our minds. We have a defensive mindset. “If only we can hold on, maybe we can end in a tie.”
I’m sick of it. I’m sick of sissified, passive Christianity. I’m sick of the girlie mommy’s boys currently populating our pulpits with a “just be nice” strategy. We will never win if our only goal is to not appear mean as they rape our cheerleaders and molest our water-boys.
We need a change in strategy. Playing ‘not to lose’ ain’t working.
I remember the great football coach Woody Hayes once commented, “I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face.”
Let’s go on the offensive. Let’s throw a few deep passes. Let’s pound the god-haters by running off tackle. Let’s use some razzle dazzle and see if they can handle it. Let’s pull out all the stops. Let’s run the no-huddle offense and wear ’em down. Let’s act like we are champions led by the greatest Coach in the world.
Let’s follow David’s example. Let’s follow Gideon’s example. Let’s follow Jesus’ example. Kill the will, boys. Get off of your butts and go on the attack. Anybody with me?
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