I played sports in my younger days and we would use certain strategies to prepare for games. The coaches would have us to watch game tape to help us understand our opponent. We would look for tendencies as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the other team. Later on I was able to see the other side of a good game plan. I became a little league coach and I understood that it was just as important to understand our own strengths and weaknesses as well as those of our opponents.
In 1 John 2:15-17 the following words are recorded “15 Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. 16 For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. 17 And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.”
When I look at ESPN they talk about teams putting themselves in the best position to win. The referenced scripture is attempting to give us a game plan that helps us put ourselves in the best possible position to see Jesus one day. Please understand that we will all see him one day, but not all will be excited about that day. First John chapter 2 shows us the first step to developing a good game plan in verse 15. We can’t serve two masters. Whether you agree with me or not, the scripture says that if we love the world, we can’t love God. Luther Ingram actually sang a song that says “If Loving You Is Wrong, I Don’t Want To Be Right”. Sadly enough we sing the words of that song to the sin that we love on a regular basis, choosing the sin over a right relationship with God.
Verse 16 declared “The things of the world are not of God.” Some may wonder what the things of the world actually are, well I'm glad you asked… These emotions, feelings and actions are the natural desires that are within all of us that conflict with the will of God. God bless you if you don’t have those struggles in your mind, but I have to admit that I struggle often to remain in the will of God. It's not embarrassing for me to admit that I have not yet reached perfection, it's actually reminds me that I'm human. My greater goal is to show spiritual growth as I aim for the perfect will of God.
Verse 17 really puts things in the proper perspective for me by teaching the reason we really shouldn’t love world is because it’s passing away. The world has fads that fade away, folk that die off and things that exist no more. For example, I use to work out like a maniac trying to maintain a certain look. I always wanted my chest to stick out beyond my stomach, now I’m just happy to be able to look down and see my toes and one day I’ll just be satisfied believing that my toes are still down there.
In the words of my granddaddy “One day we will need to quit shucking and jiving and realize that this world is coming to an end.” According to scripture there will come a day when every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. I don’t know about you, but I want to be ready. The end of verse 17 says that although the world is passing away “he/she who does the will of God will abide forever”.
When I read the scripture, I see that when Jesus returns, those that died in the faith will rise and those that are living in the faith will meet him in the air. This doesn’t just happen by chance, but we’ll need to put together “A GOOD GAME PLAN”.