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Celebrating Success

September 26, 2013

The Seattle Seahawks had a big game a week ago against the San Francisco 49ers. The first half was a close battle ending on the unique football score of 5 to 0. The media spent a lot of time talking about the growing rivalry between the Seahawks and 49ers. The coaches have been opponents since their college coaching days. The players had an abundance of adrenaline flowing. Early in the game, the jostling and jawing were evident.

I really want Seattle to do well this season. (I’m still smarting from the Super Bowl loss in 2006.) However, I want them to do it with class. In the 49er game, they not only had senseless penalties, they were also pointlessly showboating.

????????Celebration should be a part of winning a football game. However, a disciplined team with character knows the difference between celebrating and gloating. Celebrating is a spontaneous expression of joy for a great accomplishment. Gloating is an arrogant, in your face demonstration designed to flaunt your accomplishment.

One of the former great Seahawk receivers said when he scored a touchdown, he didn’t want to act surprised. He wanted to make a statement that it was no big deal. He had been here before, and he planned to be back again! When you score a touchdown, put the ball down and head to the side lines. Do that often enough and everyone will know you are great!

Does anyone picture Jesus doing a happy dance by the tomb so Mary would recognize his greatness? When Jesus was tempted, would a show of his ‘guns’ have been more intimidating to Satan? Would a set of handsprings across the grass have enhanced the feeding of the 5,000?

With his understated behavior, Jesus demonstrated greatness. Paul said that Jesus did not see even being equal with God reason enough to gloat. He let his compassion, his love, and his life do the talking. Great character is self-evident.

Let me say that I could see the blind man giving Jesus a high five. I could see the lame man and Jesus doing a chest bump. I could see the woman who anointed his feet giving him a tearful embrace. Jesus gives us plenty of reasons to celebrate. Gloating has never crossed his mind.

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