What I know about the NBA could possibly fill up a thimble; I’m not sure. How much I care about the NBA would take up even less space.
That may help to explain why I’m not too sure of the particulars of a conversation I heard recently other day while I was getting ready to go to the office. Some pundits were talking about what I assumed was yet another disgruntled player. He wasn’t getting the playing time he thought he deserved – or – he wasn’t being used like he thought he should be – or – the “chemistry” on the team wasn’t right – or – the team wasn’t performing as had been hoped – or -…
You get the picture.
Things weren’t working out the way the team had hoped when they signed him. Trade rumors were apparently floating around. Other issues were being discussed.
Finally, one of the pundits suggested what he considered to be the solution. His idea was, “They need to find a way to make it enjoyable for him.”
When I heard that, I thought about the owner of the team who had forked over millions of dollars to sign him. I thought of the fans who pay big bucks to watch him and his teammates play. I thought of the advertisers and the media. I thought of the other players on the team. What if making the experience enjoyable for him didn’t make it enjoyable for them? I thought of the fact that the team has a coach. I remembered the days when he was the one the players sought to please.
I thought of a lot of people. Nowhere on my list did I find a concern for playing a team sport an enjoyable experience for one player.
Then I thought of something else. I thought of how this type of thinking has influenced our relationship with God.
It seems that churches and preachers are abandoning at an alarming rate any consideration for what pleases God. Little thought is apparently given to pleasing the One who died for us. The Divine Book is discarded in favor of marketing tools. Those marketing tools, in turn, are designed to make the “consumer” enjoy both his/her worship experience. In fact, the attempt is made to change the whole concept of discipleship into a “fun time.”
What other reason can be given for substituting entertainment for worship; for endorsing lifestyles condemned in the Bible: for preaching a watered down gospel; and for a host of other innovations that many of us have seen in our lifetimes? Aren’t all of these (and more) just attempts to provide an enjoyable experience under the umbrella of Christianity?
A long time ago, Solomon seemingly tried everything he could think of to find happiness. He apparently wanted to enjoy all that the world of his day had to offer. Hopefully, you will remember that he deemed all of them to be “vanity” or “worthless.”
Hopefully, too, you’ll remember his summary statement concerning all of this:
“…Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man”