"Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, 'O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if He does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.'" -Daniel 3:16-18
Eric was a finely tuned football player who went to battle for his team every Friday night. He was ready to do what his coach asked him to do for the sake of his team. Then came the big game against their conference rivals. The quarterback on the other team was having a great season. The coach pulled Eric aside and told him that when he had the chance, he must take the QB out of the game, however he needed to do it. Eric, an FCA member and believer in Christ, had a decision to make.
Back in the days of King Nebuchadnezzar, three men were challenged with a similar decision. They served the king faithfully until he commanded all to bow down and worship the golden statue. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had a decision to make, but it did not take them very long. Even if it cost them to be thrown into the fiery furnace, they would stand their ground for what they believed. In the toughest situation, they would rather face death than go against what they knew was right in God's eyes.
Eric knew what he had to do. He immediately told the coach he would play his heart out for the team, but would never intentionally hurt an opponent. His coach was furious and benched Eric for his response. Eric, though disappointed in the coach's decision, stood true to his faith and his heavenly team. Could you do the same?
Eric, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego did, and in the end, they were the winners!
1. Has your coach ever asked you to do something that goes against your faith?
2. How would you respond to the above situation? Are you willing to stand up for your faith?
3. Today, how can you start to live out your faith in your sport, even if it costs you playing time?
Extra Reading: 2 Corinthians 12:10, 2 Timothy 3:10-17
God, help me make the right decision when I am asked to do something against Your standards. I want my actions to be right in Your eyes and honor Your name. Amen.