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Does God Care Who Wins the Super Bowl?

“Ask, and you will receive. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Whoever seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door is opened." Matthew 7:7-8 CEB

The question goes a few years back, after the Denver Broncos had defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 24-21 in the AFC Championship Game to earn a trip to Super Bowl 32. A group of Denver players dropped to their knees and thanked God that it was His will that they win this game. That same day, the Green Bay Packers beat the San Francisco 49ers 23-10, meaning they would face the Broncos in the Super Bowl. Reggie White of the Packers in the locker room said that it was the will of God that the Packers were in the Super Bowl. Which brings up the question, if it was God’s will that the Broncos and the Packers were to meet in the big game, then God must have, in His grand scheme of things, a plan as to who would win the Super Bowl?

But let’s face it, does God really care who wins the Super Bowl? (by the way, the Broncos won 31-24). Should the outcome of a football game, granted that it is the biggest game of the year, get consideration from God? Is it part of His, pardon the pun, big game plan?

I realize that the question of whether God cares or intervenes in football games seems a rather trivial exercise in theology. Yet there is a general undercurrent to this notion that is relevant to all our lives. And the question goes beyond football, in asking whether we can pray for personal victories in our lives. What should we pray for and not pray for? And when we pray for certain things in our lives, can God, in effect, intervene to make those things happen because we prayed in earnest?

The Scripture lesson from the Gospel of Matthew today reveals to us in Jesus’ own words, “Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be open to you. For everyone who ask receives, he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks the door will be opened.” The message at first glance seems to be that prayer is simply asking earnestly what we need, and God responds to grant that need.

Yet God desires a relationship with us, a relationship that is characterized by a loving, understanding bond. A relationship to where we can talk with God as we would talk to a friend, to be honest, genuine, and sincere. That we can talk to God even about the desires of our hearts. That is what this Scripture is conveying to us. The message of Christ’s words in Matthew is that God will not give us whatever we ask for, but He will always give us just what we need. God is a God who wants to listen and talk to us. And give us those things we need that are of eternal and ultimate value.

As for the question of the day, does God really care who wins the Super Bowl? I leave with you two great words of wisdom that would be my response. The first word comes from Christ himself in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 6 when He said, “Do not worry saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink” or ‘What shall we wear? For the pagans run after these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and his righteousness…”

The second comes from baseball great Yogi Berra who said to an opposing player who came to the plate to bat and made the sign of the cross on his chest – “Why don’t you just let God watch the game.”


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