Competition seems to be everywhere except Lambeau Field these days: the Super Bowl, the Grammies, the Oscars, American Idol. But is this degree of competition good in American society?
Competition can bring out the best in individuals. Packer fans seem to have a particular dislike for the Vikings and the Bears, but twice a season those are games that get circled on the calendar. They are the purple people eaters, the dreaded blue and orange. Cousins and friends of Packer fans can really trash talk about their teams the week of the game against the Packers.
Rivalries can be good. They can bring out the best in both teams. They can be a good benchmark test for the remainder of a season.
It seems like everyone has personal rivals too: a co-worker, a school-mate, a neighbor. Rivals can really get to each other, but they can also bring out the best in each other. In some cases the rival is the unknown driver going a little too slowly in the fast lane ahead. For the driver who needs/wants to get somewhere fast this produces something between a simple test of patience and full-blown road rage.
Rivals bring out the best or bring out the worst. It’s the person in the adjacent seat at the stadium. They can’t handle their beer very well, plus they’re forever having to go get more (and/or use the rest room). Is this another enthusiastic Packer Backer or someone worth steaming about and letting it ruin the game?
Paul said we are to keep our eye on the prize, the gift of salvation. Others will compete for that same prize, but it’s a gift freely given to all. And in the end, this prize is all that matters.
In the competitions of life, Christians must keep their heads on straight, their eyes on the prize. In fact, if it’s a friendly rivalry Christians can win friends and family over for Christ. That way everyone wins.
And may next season’s NFC championship game be at Lambeau!