We are wise to acknowledge that, in general, our society idolizes sports and winning. Nevertheless, sports holds great potential for growth in godliness. But we need to be intentionally God-oriented in our enjoyment of, and participation in, sports. Here are some helpful thoughts from C.J. Mahaney on how he seeks to cultivate Christ-like character in his son, who plays high-school basketball:
Playing sports holds great potential for growth in godliness for our sons, but only if we as fathers lead our sons theologically and strategically. I fear that all too often our sons devote significant time to playing sports with little growth in godliness. Here is where the example and leadership of a father can make all the difference. It is our responsibility as fathers to teach and prepare our sons with biblical priorities prior to a game (or practice) and not to assume that we have fulfilled our fatherly responsibility simply by attending the game. And after the game, we should encourage and celebrate evidences of godliness and not primarily our sons’ athletic ability or achievements. Our priorities for our sons’ participation in sports must be theologically informed priorities rather than culturally celebrated priorities. Fathers who aren’t theologically informed are more impressed with athletic ability, statistics and final scores than they are biblical masculinity and godly character.
Read the whole thing.
Also: Writing for a new blog, Mahaney recently posted some great advice on watching the Super Bowl to the glory of God (though his predictions about tonight’s game were decidedly off the mark).