On Sunday, I had an enjoyable time cheering for and then seeing a tie occur between the Packers and the Vikings. It was great for me because I knew that there would be grumbling from both fan bases. But then I got to thinking: how would I feel if the Bears had a tie?
Because you really could look at it two ways. One way to look at a tie is to be grateful to not have lost. Yeah for a tie! Anything is better than a loss and so you could be happy that you didn’t lose. For those of us who assume their team is always going to lose, a tie is appealing because there isn’t a number added to the loss column.
Yet, at the same time, you could view a tie as a loss and be really upset about it. If it isn’t a win then it is a loss and that could make you pretty angry. You could dwell on all the chances to win the game (and there were so many for both sides in that game) and complain about a missed opportunity. In listening to post-game coverage from both sides, it seemed like this was the route many Packer and Viking fans went. Of course, as a Bears fan, that made me pretty happy!
In the end, it is a reminder that we often have different perspectives on the same event. Neither perspective is right or wrong, but in each perspective we bring our own lenses, experiences, and values at play. All of that factors into the way we view and live in the world. So of course our faith in Jesus Christ is an important part of how we view things. But just because we are Christian doesn’t mean that there is only one way to view something.
Too often we think that believing in Jesus Christ as our Savior means that we think about an issue one way. Christians aren’t cookie cutters. We come from different backgrounds, have had different experiences, and value different things. Faith informs all of that and what connects us is a shared belief in Jesus as our Lord and Savior. But that doesn’t mean we all think or act the same way.
I once had a friend call me up because they felt that to be a Christian meant that they had to vote a certain way in an election or that they wouldn’t be a Christian. It made me incredibly sad that my friend was questioning the validity of faith if it meant they had to vote a certain way. Jesus is not a political party and faithful Christians can be found on every side of every debate on every subject.
The key for us is to respect each other’s perspectives and how we use faith to come to our decisions. Faith is one factor that leads us and guides us in what we do. What faith reminds us is that we are all human beings who fall short of the glory of God but trust in the love and grace of the Son of God who dies and rises from the grave for us. Faith reminds us that we are all loved by God, no matter our views or disagreements.
As for me and a tie, I would view almost like a win for so often my team loses anything that isn’t a mark in the loss column is like a win. But I also understand those that would view that tie negatively. And my hope is that when the Vikings and Packers play again, another tie will happen because that would be completely awesome!
Have a great week and remember to let your faith not only guide you, but also open you up to listen to and understand the perspective of others. But mostly, trust in the grace and love of your Savior Jesus Christ which is given to you every day!