We Need More Insiders In Our World

Insiders can really make a difference in explaining things that the general population doesn’t know or understand very well.

This past week I watched an NFL game on TV; the colour commentator was Tony Romo.

For those who don’t have a clue who Romo is, he just retired as quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. You could definitely consider him an insider to the game of football.

For most of his life he’s lived and breathed football. Most of his waking hours found him playing or thinking about the game.

It was his job.

Now it’s his job to give insight to the viewers into what’s happening on the field.

Romo is amazing at it! He gives insights into what the offence and coaches are thinking and going to do next. He provides information – almost like a guru – on how a defence needs to react to the play that’s being called.

And he lets you in on what is going through the head of the quarterback as he calls plays and stands behind the center, ready to receive the ball.

He is amazing at his job! – did I say that already?

I found myself totally into the game he was calling, watching for what he was predicting was going to take place. The game I watched was such a blowout, however, that in the fourth quarter the network switched the telecast to another game.

I was more disappointed to miss Tony Romo’s insider information than I was to see the end of the game.

Football is not the only place we have insiders, though. It seems like there are insiders in every walk of life, speaking to almost everything that takes place.

Sometimes those insiders only give us gossip that may or may not be true … but it sure seems like it’s correct when they are telling us.

There are also insiders who speak about things even though they don’t seem to fit the insider model … like when a movie star gives his or her political, moral or religious view about something.

For some reason they come across as insiders even on topics that aren’t their field of expertise.

For someone to be a real insider, he or she needs to have some kind of experience or learning, or even better – both.

Like Tony Romo – he immersed himself in football from a young age and continued to learn and play the game through high school, college and at the professional level.

When you hear him call a game, you know he didn’t just play a position; he has studied the game and knows it inside out.

He’s an expert … That’s what an insider really is – someone who has so thoroughly immersed him or herself in something that he or she gives amazing insights.

Romo is a good reminder to me to be particular about who I consider an insider: someone I want to take commentary from and believe it to be the truth.

Here’s the thing: If you have faith in Jesus Christ, you are an insider because you have experienced something that changed your life. You know something that many people don’t know about and have not experienced. But you will only show yourself to be an insider if you immerse yourself in your faith. You have to be a student of God’s. Learn God’s word, read it, study it, memorize verses. Then when the game is on, you can give insights that will truly enlighten, amaze, and help.

That’s Life!


Question: What are you an insider to? Leave your comments below.

Super Bowl Comeback

It’s what dreams are made of – the Super Bowl on Sunday night was an amazing comeback.

It was supposed to be a high scoring game; both teams had high powered offences.

But for the first three quarters, it looked like the story had already been written. Atlanta looked destined to win Super Bowl 51.

New England had the ball for much of the game, but there were dropped passes, quarterback sacks, and a couple of turnovers that just kept them from turning their possession time into points on the board.

By late in the third quarter, the score was 28-3 for Atlanta. New England finally crossed the goal line with 2 minutes left in the quarter, but then missed the convert.

New England went into the fourth quarter in a hole that seem insurmountable – it had never actually been mounted before.

People turned the game off, wrote the team off, got into that sorry funk when your team is out of it.

Then New England got a field goal and, with it, a glimmer of hope that if they scored two touchdowns with two point conversions they could tie the game.

Not likely; you’d need the comeback kids to do that.

… I remember playing road hockey on our street. My team was a little weaker than the other team. My brother was on that team and they also had the oldest and biggest guy on the street.

When he took a shot, everyone got out of the way. No one wanted to block his cannon.

We were behind in the game by about 4 goals, and dinner time was fast approaching. We huddled together and determined to beat those guys.

We scored a goal quickly and then it started … we muttered to each other, “the comeback kids.”

We got another goal, and our mantra got a little louder, “We’re the comeback kids!”

After the next goal, we actually believed what we were saying and the chant picked up some swagger to it.

After that we put in the goal to win the game, just before dinner. We were ecstatic, hugging each other and cheering, “Comeback kids, comeback kids, come back kids!”

That was the greatest comeback story of all time … but last night’s Super Bowl game came pretty close to it.

One of New England’s sure-handed receivers (Julian Edelman) had dropped about 3 passes in the game. But with 2 minutes left in the final quarter, he made one amazing catch that put them into the category of the comeback kids.

A pass to Eldeman was tipped, but the receiver stayed with it and tracked it down, getting hold of the ball about an inch from the ground.

It was something else! A Falcon defender said it best; looking up at the replay on the score board, you could see him mouth the word “wha . . .wha . . .wha . . .wha . . .wha . . .t?!”

That’s right, this catch got everyone out of their seats, and set up the greatest comeback (next to the comeback kids of ’69) in Super Bowl history. Awesome!

Here’s the thing: When do you quit when it seems impossible to make the change that God wants you to make? The answer is never! That’s what comeback kids do; they keep coming back to see it through to victory.

That’s Life!


Question: What do you need a comeback on right now? Leave your comments below.

Our Expressions Don’t Lie

Our expressions reveal our emotions and, without a mirror in front of us to monitor our expressions, sometimes our emotions leak out for others to see.

Richard Sherman expressions.001Mind you, some people are better at keeping their expressions in check that others. We call those people “tough to read”; it’s difficult to know what they are feeling or thinking.

I’m not that particularly difficult to read apparently, at least according to my wife. I can sit down with a plate of food in front of me and within a millisecond she knows what I think of dinner.

I don’t have to poke the meat with my finger or even pick up a fork – the look on my face tells her everything (eww, it’s stew).

I would probably make a pretty lousy poker player; everyone would know if my hand was good or bad.

I’ve even seen professional poker players on TV hide their expressions with sunglasses or hats shielding their faces.

The other day watching the Super Bowl, there were some pretty good emotions. Camera men are particularly good at zeroing in on faces when something in the game goes bad or good.

Early into the second half, after Seattle had scored to take the lead for the first time in the game, the look on the Seahawks’ coach’s face was, “I think we have this game”. He looked pretty confident.

His face didn’t show the same easy smile later in the game, however, when in the last 3 minutes the momentum of the game was moving up and down like a roller coaster at Canada’s Wonderland.

When New England scored and there was still three minutes left in the game, the Patriots’ quarterback sat on the bench and couldn’t look up. There was too much on the line.

Seattle started moving the ball. Then a long pass, that at first looked incomplete, turned out to be a reception as the receiver bobbled the ball a few times and grabbed it while falling on his back on the 5 yard line.

Wow, the looks on both benches was telling. Only a minute to go in the game, Tom Brady (New England’s QB) had a look of, “No way! You’ve got to be joking!”

… One play later, the ball is on the one yard line. It is a guaranteed touchdown for Seattle. The game is over; there is no hope for New England. But Seattle decides to pass the ball and throws an interception.

The emotions go wild again. Brady is now jumping up and down on the sideline with his hands raised. The coach raises his arm in the air signalling victory.

Over on the Seattle sideline the emotions are prolific. One player will have his mug in the news for days as his facial expressions went from joy to sheer horror in a matter of seconds.

… The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.

Here’s the thing: As poor a job as we do hiding our emotions for others to see, it is impossible to hide our emotions from God. He sees everything; He knows our emotionally-charged roller coaster life. So instead of dropping the visor of your hat to cover your expressions when you pray, simply tell Him what you are feeling and thinking. He wants to hear, and He can help.

That’s Life!


Question: When do you have a hard time keeping your expressions in check? Leave your comment blow.

Perfect In The Moment

Have you ever been perfect? I don’t mean getting a perfect score on an exam – you just have to study hard to know the answers. I mean, have you ever done something perfectly?


Maybe you assembled a BBQ and there were no extra parts left over. You marvelled over your feat … but that doesn’t really count if you had the instructions in front of you.

To be perfect in that, you would have to put the BBQ together with all the parts in the right place and nothing left over, WITHOUT using the instructions.

Now that would be perfect. It would also be impossible.

Being perfect is actually doing the impossible.  We are not perfect people; we all have some flaw … some more than others. But perfect we are not.

So when you find yourself being perfect, it does cause you to pause and cherish the moment, because it probably won’t ever happen again.

I’m telling you this because I was perfect a couple of weeks ago. It was just for a moment; it was over in a flash.

I didn’t even realize I was perfect until three days after my great accomplishment. In fact, I was already not perfect again by the time I found out I was perfect.

Have I got you hypnotized yet? Well let me tell you how it all happened.

I’m in a football pool. It’s not a high stakes, money laundering, loan sharking, football pool. It’s just for fun. No money at stake, the winner just gets the satisfaction of winning.

All we do is pick the winning teams from about 13 different football games each week. Oh ya, and they’re from three different leagues: US college games, NFL games and CFL games.

This pool has been going for the past nine years. And in the words of the league secretary, “… never before – not once – in our history has a franchise owner had a perfect weekend during the regular season. We’ve had 1 loss and plenty of 2 loss weekends, but NEVER HAS ANYONE HAD A PERFECT WEEKEND” (emphasis mine).

That’s right, I was perfect that weekend! I picked all the winners that week. And I did this with no manual, no insider information, not even a secret formula.

It was all pure luck – I mean, perfection.

I have to tell you, I felt pretty special for about 30 seconds after I read the announcement in my email. But I was alone at the time so I just got back to working on my sermon or something.

But as perfect as I was for that brief moment, my son was able to bring me down with a few words: “Dad you should have bought a sports lottery ticket. With those picks you would have won a lot of money.”

So what if I could have made millions, well, maybe thousands? What’s really important is I was perfect for that moment. No one can take it from me, and it probably won’t happen again.

Here’s the thing: Those times when you encounter God in a truly special way, in a way that only He can bring about, cherish those moments. Remember them. You’ll be able to find encouragement in them when you’ve lost your motivation. Those moments will give you strength to continue in times of difficulty. Supernatural times when God is so close and personal may not come every day, but they will always be crystal clear in your mind.

That’s Life!


Question: What encounter have you had with God that you will never forget? Leave your comment below.

When The Hype Doesn’t Live Up To Reality

It’s a major let down when the real thing doesn’t live up to the hype. Oh, and you know I’m talking about Sunday’s Superbowl game.

madden 98.001

It’s the biggest game in the NFL year and only one team showed up. All the advertisers showed up, with their 4 million dollar commercials. And all the celebrities showed up with their $2500 plus tickets, getting in on the hype to promo their movies or shows.

The football commentators showed up, bringing us game analysis for four hours before the game and then all the way through the game.

This game was wrapped in so much glitter, glory and glam, that even the most uninterested fan couldn’t help but want to get a little peek at what was going to be unwrapped for us.

Wow, what a disappointment! I was expecting a football game. It was more like my son, Mike playing ”Maddens Football 98” with me on our old Sony Playstation. I could never figure out what control to use to tackle his running back. He just killed me!

I had a nightmare last night that Mike was controlling the Settle Seahawks and I was at the controls of the Denver Broncos and that I lost the game for them. I should never have got that kid a gaming system.

Okay, maybe I’m thinking it was such a bad game because I was hoping for Denver to win. But, on second thought, from the first snap that went sailing by Peyton Manning’s head, I had this bad feeling in my gut that this was how it was going to be the whole game.

It would be nice if we could point a finger at someone and say it was his fault. But pretty much the whole team got in on the disaster. From fumbles, to miss tackles, and from poor throws to missed assignments, it was all working for Denver.

I even had in mind to turn the channel and watch American Idol auditions … actually, no I didn’t, but maybe something else. I had a friend who told me half way through that he was going to watch the movie, “Sleepless in Seattle” instead.

It was a dog of a game. I’m sure Seattle fans see it differently. Yes, they played well, but with the way Denver played they should have beat them by twice as much.

There was a nice run back for a touchdown and a couple other plays that were pretty good. But the best play was probably the only touchdown pass that Denver made. The catch was what you wanted to see throughout the Superbowl – spectacular!

Well, I guess I’m glad it’s over. We can all move on to the Olympics now. Poor Lily – she wishes we could take a break from sports for a while. But this year the Superbowl just paves the way for 16 non-stop days of sports over in Sochi.

Here’s the thing: Living the Christian life has to be real. It has to be getting up every day and giving it all you have, putting your life on the line for what you believe. You have to show up as a Christian every day because you don’t know who might be in the audience. You never want the hype to be greater than the real thing.

That’s Life!


Question: What can get in your way of bringing your best as a Christian each day? Leave your comment below.