The Gospel and The World Cup

by Dawn W

GUYS. I love soccer.

In May, I didn’t know anything about soccer. When the World Cup started, I watched because obviously that’s what you do.

BUT GUYS. I love soccer. It’s amazing and exciting and challenging and so much awesome packed into 90 minutes.

One of the things I like most about watching the World Cup is seeing the teams and fans interact with one another. Soccer players will finish playing hard against one another and then hug. Often, they even trade jerseys as a sign of respect and camaraderie. The fans will bond over the mutual experience of sport, win or lose. Soccer/football is a community. It is a lifestyle. Our teams may fight one another on the pitch, but when the 90 minutes are done, everyone is once again on the universal team of sport.

Can anyone remember the last time we saw that much community in the Church? When teams didn’t matter because we are all playing for the same goal?

Me neither.

Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not saying that Christians can’t be sports fans because we need to be focused on Jesus and not on how Olivier Giroud gives the best hugs or how Tim Howard needs to be canonized. What I am saying is that we, as individual believers, need to focus more on the ties that bind rather than the thorns that tear us apart.

Let us greet one another with the unity and respect that only love in a common thing can bring. After all, what we have in common in undeniably the most important commonality there is.