Olympic glory: Feast for losers

February 23, 2010 — 2 Comments

One of the advantages of living here is watching the Olympics on Eurosport. They didn’t pay $800 million for the broadcast rights, so it’s nothing too fancy. But to me, live feeds at all hours of the day, and covering virtually every sport is the way the Olympics should be seen. We once watched a 50 kilometer cross country ski race for two hours in silence [we turned off the German commentary]. I loved seeing the snow and watching one of my personal favorite sports [and Saturday nights here can be slow].

Of course, Eurosport also shows the medal ceremonies, the winners on the podium, receiving the applause and adulation of the crowd. It’s always inspiring to see the triumphant champions get the glory they deserve. And afterwards, they’ll be rewarded with rich advertising contracts and held up as models of hard work and talent. Some of them will land on a box of Wheaties, “The Breakfast of Champions.”


I confess I like Christian celebrities. I like to hear about successful athletes who are models of faith. I like to think I’m on the winning team. I’m apt to think: “Christianity: The Religion of Champions”.

The only problem is that’s dangerous thinking. A truer Christian version of that slogan would be something like “Jesus Christ: Feast for Losers” because that’s who Jesus welcomed into His kingdom. Not just the winners, the rich and famous and successful people, but also losers, failures, the undisciplined, the untalented.

In the country where I live, the criticism is often made that the message of the gospel targets the poor, the helpless, those who don’t know any better. In other words, the losers. The critics are exactly right. Jesus came for the sick, not the healthy. He warned about people who love the places of honor and important seats, people who clean the outside but inside are full of greed, people who strain out gnats from soup and then swallow a whole camel.

He sought out everyone including the:
prostitutes
elderly
pimps
addicts
drunks
illiterate
abused
abusers
overeaters
mentally
unstable
emotionally unstable
poor
uneducated
extortionists
children
unproductive and lazy
swindlers
rich exploiters
terrorists
superintellectuals
the unlovely

That’s who I’ll find on God’s Olympic podium, receiving the crown of life. Some of them will be smelly, emotionally needy, unattractive. Some of them will be beautiful and wealthy. Altogether, it will be a motley crew, a most undeserving lot.

Take a good look, friends, at who you were when you got called into this life. I don’t see many of “the brightest and the best” among you, not many influential, not many from high-society families. Isn’t it obvious that God deliberately chose men and women that the culture overlooks and exploits and abuses, chose these “nobodies” to expose the hollow pretensions of the “somebodies”? That makes it quite clear that none of you can get by with blowing your own horn before God. Everything that we have—right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start—comes from God by way of Jesus Christ. That’s why we have the saying, “If you’re going to blow a horn, blow a trumpet for God.”

I Corinthians 1:26-31 The Message

2 responses to Olympic glory: Feast for losers

  1. 

    I live in Zurich and we are able to watch the Olympics in English on Eurosport. I do enjoy it, but sometimes I crave a little bit of the US Network "inside look" at the athletes, about how they made it to the top, etc. I've been lurking at your site and want to tell you that I enjoy it, and God bless.

  2. 

    hi Ann- lee here- don't have time to respond to your postings but really do enjoy reading them. I'm writing because Bruce and Iwere talking alst night and Jerry web is trying to get a hold of Jack- something about 40 thousand that will revert to the state in 4 days if he doesn't do something…and jack has not been responding to emails- so i thought i'd try this route!- he needs to call Jerry Web ASAP! Love lee

I'd love to hear what you are thinking...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s