Audience of One • Devotion 4

Lean On Me
Rich Sawacki

Joining a team is both exciting and intimidating.

The possibility of making new friends is exciting. Your new friends will have the same goals but different skills, making it a great learning opportunity. You will celebrate wins together and be there for each other in the losses.

I have played sports on lots of different teams growing up. The first time I joined a church sports team, it was a summer softball league at the park. The church staff provided food in the pavilion each week. While we all ate together, one of the leaders would give a message. I loved being on this team and never missed a week!

Let me just start by saying softball is one of my least favorite sports. It definitely was not the sport that drew me to the team. It was the fellowship and hanging out with other believers. How did they act? They were different than I was used to from the other teams I played on!
They made honest calls. There was some trash-talking, but it was not ridiculing or belittling. It was a very competitive experience. While they played to win, winning the game was not the most important thing. It was all about how you played the game. The opposite teams would cheer you on. When you got struck out or missed a catch, it was okay. The only thing they seemed to care about was if you were giving it your all! It is good to have other people around you that want to see you giving it your all. It makes you play better and brings your game up to another level.

Let me tell you the funniest thing that happened when I was on that softball team. It still makes me smile every time I think about it. We were playing against the A-Team, also known as the Pastors’ team. These guys had been playing together for a while, their team was stacked. Our team was filled with new people that had never played together before. So we knew we were going to have to really bring it. One of our batters was up to the plate. They hit a pop-up and got an out. Right at that moment, without even thinking about it, the batter let out a swear word. Without any hesitation or condemnation, the A-team yells out “Church league, church league” and we all start laughing. It was truly the funniest thing ever, I am smiling right now just remembering it again.
 
Sometimes the intensity of life can bring out the worst in us. However, it could bring out the best in us. If we are with the right people when things go wrong or we have a moment of weakness, they can help us to get back on the right track.

Check out this story in Exodus chapter 17 about a time Moses needed his team. It was during a moment of weakness. When Moses sent Joshua off to fight the Amalekites he told him to take a team with him. Moses also took his own team, Aaron and Hur, with him to the top of the hill. As long as Moses held his staff up in the air, Joshua and his team were winning the battle.

Whenever Moses lowered his arms, they would start to lose. When Aaron and Hur saw Moses was getting tired they brought him a rock to sit on. When Moses’ arms became tired, they held his arms up for him, until Joshua and his team won the battle.

We are called to build our foundation on the rock, which is Christ Jesus, and to battle just as Joshua and his team did. We are also called to help our leaders. This could mean setting them on the rock to refresh them or holding them up when they are tired so we can all celebrate victory together as a team.
 
The church is just like the softball team I was part of. There were many others that were part of the team each week, that never played softball at all. They were there to serve us, to feed us, to preach to us, to teach us, to pray for us, and to encourage us. They were just as important as those that held a bat and ran the bases.

No matter how intimidating it may feel, please remember you matter and we need you to complete the team. Please read 1 Corinthians 12:12-20.

Please do not let anything stop you from joining the team!


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