My father has always rooted for the underdog. Unless his favorite team is playing, he has generally pulled for the team that is considered less likely to win.
Being from Illinois and a Cubs fan, his favorite team and the team considered the underdog are often the same!
It warms our hearts to see teams considered less capable triumph and pull off a victory. I’ll never forget the feeling of victory when our daughter’s high school soccer team defeated the favored team from a big school in Charlotte for the second round of the state playoffs. We were definitely the underdog, and it was so exciting for our team and our fans. “Little Mountain School Beats Big City Favorite”
Paul uses examples of athletic events several times in his letters to the early church. His readers were familiar with competition in games of physical skill and so Paul uses these to encourage new Christians.
Hebrews 12: 1-3 NET
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, we must get rid of every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and run with endurance the race set out for us, 2 keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith. For the joy set out for him he endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Think of him who endured such opposition against himself by sinners, so that you may not grow weary in your souls and give up.
That “great cloud of witness” are those who have gone on before us – who by faith have testified to the truth of God’s absolute faithfulness. (AMP)
They are cheering us on!
Even when we feel like the underdog, the less talented, the “loser”, God’s saints are pulling for us.
When we feel incapable of
- raising our children,
- facing the challenges ahead,
- just getting out of bed,
- feeding one more whining, reluctant eater
we must continue to run with endurance the race set before us.
Your race is different from mine.
Yet we have the same promise of God’s presence and strength.
It appears my father will be joining that great crowd of witnesses soon. I know he will be cheering us on, trusting in God’s faithfulness to give us strength for what we are facing.
After all, Dad was a track coach and he always pulls for the underdog…