I once read that football could be described as "all get up, all fall down." Eating popcorn while sitting on the blanket on the Camaile Hill while my father watched K.U. football games with his binoculars was part of my childhood in Lawrence, Kansas. Certainly from that vantage point this saying was true of the game: all get up, all fall down...
Later, I enjoyed going to high school football games, college games, and playing flag football. I even watched this last Super Bowl game with a flicker of passion I didn't know still existed for the sport. But sometimes the Psalms are a play by play description of "all get up, all fall down," for David's team. He was the quarterback. God's still the coach.
Umm, back in the day, there weren't any fancy-pancy tents,
just families seating on picnic cloths. And did I really watch any games
from this vantage point? Ahh, no, to be honest.
I was just a kid eating popcorn and running around.
Yeah, we have a little family rivalry here as I was from Lawrence, Kansas, K.U.
a certified Jayhawker vs my husband from Manhattan, Kansas, K. State.
Cheers like, "Push 'em back, push 'em back, way back!" or "Fight, fight, fight!" could be shouted. Here it is...
"Contend, O Lord,
with those who contend with me;
fight against those who fight against me."
See what I mean? Football. The battle cries of David. I may not yell these verses in the quiet of my home, but I have read them in fervent prayer against those who would be enemies in my life and in His church, against those who line up against me, against my family. I'm crouched down ready to hit them with my shoulder pads. What? You've never had the experience of being out on a field where all get up, all fall down?
"Take hold of buckler and shield and rise up for my help.
Draw also the spear and the battle-axe to meet those who pursue me;
Say to my soul, 'I am your salvation.'"
I do know that we need equipment before going out there on the line. I wouldn't want to go face the opposing team as just a leather head (That's what they called the earliest players whose leather helmets offered little to no protection in the game.) I do know that the object is to be able to play offense more than defense. The object is to gain yardage. The object is to score. To win. To get over the goal line. And yes, wimpy as I am, one of my goals is to not be carried off the field on a stretcher.
"Malicious witnesses", "smitters", "they slandered me without ceasing, like godless jesters at a feast," "they repay me evil for good, to the bereavement of my soul." "I went about as though it were my friend or brother; I bowed down mourning, as one who sorrows for a mother." Can't you just hear the clashing of the helmets? Umm, yes, I've felt them. I might even have lingering damage from concussions. There have been interceptions, incomplete passes, lost yardage, penalties. It's the third down, with only minutes to go. It's time to kick a field goal.
"Lord, how long will You look on? Rescue my soul from the ravishes...Do not be silent; Stir up Yourself, and awake to my right and to my cause, my God and my lord...Do not let them rejoice over me. Do not let them say in their heart, 'Aha, our desire! Do not let them say, 'We have swallowed him up!' Sometimes it just looks like we are being creamed, whether personally, in Christendom, in our nation, in our world. But the game is not over. Watch the ball soar through the goal posts. The crowd roars!
"Let them shout for joy and rejoice...
Let them say continually,
'The Lord be magnified,
Who delights in the prosperity of His servant.'
And my tongue shall declare Your righteousness
And your praise all day long."
And the stands went crazy!