Therefore, I remind you to keep ablaze the gift of God that is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgment, 1 Timothy 1:6-7. For this gospel I was appointed a herald, apostle, and teacher, and that is why I suffer these things. But I am not ashamed, because I know the One I have believed in and am persuaded that He is able to guard what has been entrusted to me until that day, 2 Timothy 1:11-12, ESV.
With four high school rivalries in our area, football is a big deal. We can see the lights of one of the fields from our house, and boys in our neighborhood are on the team. I like to watch football—a game that combines strength and strategy; the pushing and the passing, all make for a great time of cheering and entertainment.
But, what if the teams never left the huddle? What if the teams stayed circled up, facing each other? They could keep encouraging each other, calling plays and making plans, but they must break the huddle at some point and square up against the opposing team on the line of scrimmage. They have to leave the comfort of the huddle in order to play the game.
Now, I bet some of the players—especially the linesmen whose job is to push back the opposing team so their team goes forward to score—would love to stay in that comfortable huddle. They enjoy the encouragement and face-to-face contact with their own players. But, they know the huddle is not where the game is won—it’s not where the opponent is pushed back and it is not where victory is attained.
We like our huddles, spiritually speaking. We enjoy being with others who believe as we do. We can encourage each other for days on end at conferences, meetings, and worship services. We have been called, however, to the front lines of the battle for men’s souls. We are to be pushing back the forces of darkness with our testimonies, prayers, courage and witnessing to win the lost for Christ and gain victories for the Kingdom of God.
Don’t misunderstand; there is a time and a place for huddles in the football game. The team needs those moments to encourage one another and to know what the call is so the play is successful. We need those times too, but if we only ever stay in the huddle and never experience the battle—we are not winning! God calls us over comers—let’s get to the front line!
Thought-provoker: Have you stayed in the huddle too long, or are you battling for the kingdom?
Lord, thank You for the times when I need the huddle to encourage me and keep me strong in the faith. But, thank You that You have chosen me as a part of Your team, and You trust me to help forward Your kingdom. Help me to do my part on the frontlines today! Amen.