Making a team is a big deal. We all can probably relate to the schoolyard scene where kids are bunched up and getting ready to choose their teams for a recess kickball tournament. The “alpha kids” declare themselves to be captains, and no one argues with them. Then they begin to pick their team. They start with the kids who are really good at the game and make their way down the pecking order. Can you remember standing there, hoping that they’d choose you sooner rather than later? Maybe fast forward to high school when you went out for a real sport. Perhaps you spent all summer getting ready for the “prep week.” It was exhausting, and there were a lot of kids trying out. Some were shoo-ins and others were iffy. Usually, they posted the list on the gym door. Do you remember crowding around to see if your name was there? I can relate to both examples, and maybe that’s why Sunday’s message resonated with me.
Paul was affirming his choices for teammates in the church at Ephesus. He was confirming his desire that they lead that community in a Christ-like manner. It was a moment of inspiration, a “Go team!” moment.
Our message reminded us of the key characteristics that make up a good team. Our church is a team, and Chet used the letters “G-I-V-E” to help us remember what real teammates are like. First and foremost, the “G” shows us that great team members are givers, not takers. Teammates live to support each other. When one does well, we all cheer. If one falls, we help them up. We exercise our spiritual gifts in an attempt to support the entire team. The “I” helps to remind us that once we make the team, we need to give it all we’ve got. Good teammates do not focus on the difficult, but rather exhibit an indomitable spirit. That spirit picks everyone else up as we feed off each other’s energy. The “V” speaks of our mindset. Excellent teammates think like victors, not victims. Difficulties are acknowledged, but they are viewed like stepping stones to the next victory. No one hangs their head in that locker room. Instead, cheers resound and no one is ignored. Lastly, the “E” helps us to keep our eyes on the true goal for our spiritual team. Our purpose is to evangelize to others. We are focused on the game plan issued by our Coach, the Lord Jesus, who said, “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15). This week, the bottom-line thought is that we have all MADE THE TEAM! Thanks to what Christ has done on our behalf, our name is on the list. Our salvation assures us a spot on the roster. Now, let’s behave like a Biblical team member. Let’s give, inspire, encourage, and share the Gospel with passion!
Sherry Worel is a Bible teacher at heart and lives a life of ministry. She’s been involved at Coast Hills teaching Women’s LIFE, Bible studies, online courses, devotionals, participating in Upstream conversations, and much more. Having a love for education, Sherry has over 50 years of teaching experience with schools, churches, and mission agencies. As well as earning her Master’s at Talbot Seminary, she rounded out her education with 35 years as Head of School at Stoneybrooke Christian School. Sherry is happiest with a book or fishing pole in hand.