Even though it may be 95 degrees outside fall is here.  That means football is here. That can only mean one thing. College football coaches around the country are speaking in footballese and all we can do in trying to understand them is scratch our collective heads. And some of our heads do need collecting. One coach was quoted as saying, “You can’t take for granted the little things like getting in and out of the huddle.” Other than flag football in college I never played organized football, but I would have to assume that finding the huddle would be a basic requirement for making the team. Maybe they need to involve the scout team in that endeavor.

Another somewhat dubious quote was, “The guys really got out here and got after it for just having helmets on.” That sounds like more of a fraternity party than a football practice. Not sure I want to see it. Another coach said, “Pretty much everybody took a step forward but there were a few who took a step backward. Let me picture that. If they repeated that over and over wouldn’t they be doing the Hokey Pokey?  My favorite and yet most disturbing quote was, “We are mainly concerned about personnel, putting people in the right position and executing what we do put in.” I’m going out on a limb here and assume they are referring to executing the plays.

We can laugh at coaches but we can also laugh at what people in the past said when there were no electronic devices around to record them. Alexander Graham Bell’s first words on the telephone were actually “If you would like to speak to Mr. Bell please press one. If you think you have reached this number in error you are wrong because this is the only number!” George Orwell said to his psychiatrist, “I don’t know, Doc. It’s my older brother. He’s always watching me.” John Merrick, better known as The Elephant Man, actually said, “I am not an animal! I’ve just been on this committee too long!”

Have you ever thought about how things might be different if Jesus had responded to people in need with a different choice of words? During the storm on the Sea of Galilee Jesus could have just said, “Man the lifeboats!” When the 5000 were hungry  and  needed food he didn’t say, “They should have thought of that before they came.” He also never said, “You are the light of the world, but it’s okay if you want to hide it.”

How good are we at choosing our words wisely? Do we tell little lies to get us out of difficult situations? If someone needs encouragement do we offer it or do we remain silent? When troubles come our way do we ask God for peace or do we just scream for the lifeboats? If a friend comes to us in trouble do we try and comfort him or do we just tell him he should have thought of the consequences before he made his choice?

Jesus said “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life” (John 8:12 ESV). Then he tells us “You are the light for the whole world. . . let your light shine before people so that they may see the good things you do and give praise to your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:14-16 TEV). Yes, Jesus is the light of the world, but unfortunately Christians control the switch.

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