Where Sports and Faith Collide.
Devotion of the Week

Devotion of the Week

On January 9, 1977, Super Bowl XI was played between Oakland and Minnesota. Early in the game, Oakland moved into Minnesota’s red zone, but came away with only a field goal. John Madden, the Raiders head coach, was frustrated. Kenny Stabler, the Raiders quarterback, said, “Don’t worry, Coach. There’s plenty more where that came from.” He was right. With the Raiders’ line opening huge holes for Clarence Davis and Mark Van Eegham, while allowing Stabler time to find Fred Biletinikoff, Cliff Branch and Dave Casper, the Raiders won easily 32-14...

I was talking to my sister about her conference tennis match on the phone this year. She was nervous and anxious, and she needed some comfort. I told her, “Carrie, nobody works harder than you. Nobody trains better. Nobody takes more lessons. There’s nothing else you can do. Enter the match knowing that. And be comforted by that. What happens will play out, but know you’ve done everything...”

Marshall beat Xavier 15-13 on Sept. 25, 1971, in a college football game. Nothing about that seems spectacular, noteworthy or would make anyone have goose bumps—except a Marshall fan or someone who knows college football history. That game was memorable and spectacular, not because Marshall quarterback Reggie Oliver threw a touchdown pass...

In the 1970’s the Pittsburgh Steelers won four Super Bowls. Part of the reason was that their offensive front four could all bench press 500 pounds. Their superior strength protected Terry Bradshaw well and opened huge holes for Franco Harris and Rocky Bleier. The weight room is a vital part of athletic programs today in professional, college and even high school sports. Strength training pays off in football, basketball, and other sports as well...

Doug Flutie was someone who didn’t fit the prototypical quarterback. He only stood 5-feet, 9 inches tall, but he had a strong arm, a huge heart and a belief that his team could win. On Nov. 23, 1984, with six seconds left on the clock, and Flutie’s Boston College team trailing the defending national champion Miami Hurricanes, fans saw all of Flutie’s qualities and more...

At the end of the 2013 MLB season, the greatest closer of all time, Mariano Rivera, will hang up his Yankee uniform and retire at the age of 43. The Yankees closer for the last 17 years is still excelling at an age most players, and pitchers specifically, are long gone from the game, and he was just named the 2013 MLB All-Star Game MVP. It’s unlikely there will ever be another like him. And yet, while the watching world believes his purpose on this earth is coming to an end, Rivera believes it is only beginning...

Kay Robertson looked out in the parking lot of the place she was working and saw her husband, Phil, slumped over in his car, his head on the steering wheel. Several months prior, Phil had said he didn’t want to be around his wife or his children. He told them this, then he left. Alcohol was his love, and his wife and children were a distant second...

R.A. Dickey, last year’s National League Cy Young winner, has been through some difficult times. In our cover story on pages 42-47 of our most recent print issue (log in here to read), he says: “I remember really being angry with God, like, ‘How can You take me to the precipice of a new start and then allow this to happen?’ You want answers, and I talk to God like He’s real. He already knows what I’m feeling, so why hide it? I’m not going to sugarcoat it, and so if I’m angry, I’m angry. If I’m sad, I’m sad. I’m not going to pretend to be somebody I’m not. I did that for too long...”

In the 1934 World Series between the Cardinals and Tigers, Dizzy and Paul Dean (featured in the picture with Babe Ruth) combined to pitch in 5 of the 7 games, each working on short rest. In the 1946 Series, Harry Brecheen pitched in 3 of the 7 games, working on short rest. In 1964, 1967 and 1968, Bob Gibson pitched 3 of the 7 games. More recently, Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson of the Diamondbacks together pitched in 5 of the 7 games against the Yankees in 2001. Many of these times the results were positive, but not always...

Sometimes I think about all the things Jesus did and why He did them. Not just the core stuff, like rising from the dead and all, but all the little stuff. Like appearing before 500 people, or chilling with the apostles for 40 days, or all the little miracles—which aren’t really little, but compared to conquering death and defeating sin, kind of are. My ESV study Bible theorizes why Jesus did what he did: “Jesus appeared multiple times to his disciples and gave them many proofs to strengthen their faith..."

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