Thursday, January 07, 2021


This weekend is usually an exciting time for me. You see, I’m a Patriots' fan and for the better part of the last two decades my New England Patriots would be set to enter the NFL playoffs - most likely one of the favorites to advance to the Super Bowl. 

But not this year. For the first time since the 2000 season my team ended the schedule with a losing record. No playoffs. No hope for another title.  But they are still my team. (And by the way, I am not rooting for Tom Brady. He is not a Patriot. He’s nothing but a traitor. In fact, I hope Tampa Bay loses in the first round. But I have no hard feelings about this).

The Pats were my team long before this incredible run and they will be my team even if the next two decades bring nothing but mediocrity. I’m not like those front-runners. People who switch from team to team depending on performance. Those people really annoy me. One year they’re sporting Chief’s gear. The year before that they were Warrior fans. The year before that they were all about the Broncos.  And on and on it goes. Every year a new team.  That’s not my style. Pick a team and stick with them. It’s called loyalty.

I may be way off target with this loyalty to sports thinking, but I do think I’m onto something. Even if you are one those dreadful front runners, shouldn’t there be some things that we remain loyal to? Aren’t there some things that we should pledge our devotion to and, no matter what, maintain that devotion? Aren’t there some causes, institutions, and people that we should stick with even if they have an occasional slump, or even a bad decade or two?

Years ago, in one of my first real jobs I was offered a retirement plan. The company would match a portion of my contribution and I was promised that in time the money would grow. If I remained loyal, I would have something saved for retirement.

That sounded good. But I remember getting my first quarterly report. It was a small amount, but I had lost money. This was not what I was promised. My money was supposed to grow, not shrink. Panicking, I called the number of the agent. I can still recollect his calm and reassuring voice telling me that these things happen. Sometimes you will make money, sometimes you will lose money. But no need to jump ship. Your loyalty will pay off. In short, he said, “Give it time.”

What loyalties in your life are being challenged? Are you ready to give up on someone or something? Are you about ready to change team jerseys?

I’m not saying that we need to be loyal to everything and everyone for ever and ever. But loyalty to the right things, right causes, and right people often have a way of delivering huge dividends. Stay loyal to those things.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As concerning the Word of life, Luke 10 section 25-28 says: On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" "What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?" He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" "You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."
Matthew 5 section 43-48 says: "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
In Old Testament, the Jewish people and their ancestors were given the Law to observe. First, What Adam and Eve should observe was that they could not eat the fruits from the tree of wisdom. Then, their son Cain was told that he should not kill. As sins became increased, the laws were also added more. Up to the generation of Moses, the Law in Old Testament was given to Israelites. We know that the Law is good and the Law is used to punish people who commit sins, but people cannot obey the Law because the sinful spirits are in people. Even that we know stealing and giving false testimony are sinful, but greedy and pride spirits in us drive us to do sinful things. So as Old Testament prophesied we need to get rid of our sinful nature from our spirits.
Ezekiel 36 section 24-27 says: "'For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
The prophecies are fulfilled when Jesus begins to teach love. The two greatest commandments are " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" Love is above the Law and if people have love they are free from the law of sin and death. People who are full of love will not think about stealing or giving false testimony but are merciful and they feed hungry people or give thirsty people something to drink or invite strangers in or clothe people who need clothes. The Law is for people who commit sins. Nobody will say that he will get reward because he does not steal before. But love is the grace we get. And with love we will get eternal life.
Romans 13 section 8-10 says: Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. The commandments, "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," "Do not covet," and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
John 4 section 23-24 says: Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."