by Ken Rolheiser
Getting the job done and Tom Brady Part 1

Q: What's the difference between Tom Brady and a dollar bill? A: You can still get four quarters out of a dollar bill.

Truth be told Brady did play all four quarters and has the bruises to prove it. Incredibly, he survived, and his courage survived being sacked and knocked down repeatedly. I had given up on the game for the Patriots by the third quarter – trailing 28 to 3.

Thanks to Tom Brady and the New England Patriots I received some profound inspirations. You and I are in the position of knowing about getting things done before time runs out as it will for everyone. But to make every second count, like in this year’s Super Bowl game, now that's a challenge.

I couldn't believe they could pull it off. I had written that game off. I was hoping for respectability. They got that alright!

How do we fare in our spiritual lives? We have a limited time to do what we are here on earth to do. Some of us are in the second half or even the fourth quarter. Do we have Brady’s courage to keep going? To get up, dust ourselves off, even heal up a little and keep going?

Do we settle for respectability? Or do we go for victory? Heaven awaits us, and I’m not sure how many more time-outs we are allowed.

Life, like the Super Bowl, has its poetry. Roger Goodell had to hand the trophy to Brady
after suspending him for four games at the start of the season – the under inflated
football fiascal. That is poetry, and I don’t mean just the alliteration.

Fortunately in our lives we have team mates to support us. It might be your spouse, your friends, your church group. We all have supporters we can get inspiration from and game winning strategies, though the church might have the odd missed convert as in Brady’s game.
The 2017 Super Bowl achievements of New England Patriots pale in comparison to what we can achieve with the Spirit’s help as we follow Christ’s ministry.
Picture this: The team stands together, heads bowed in prayer, with the coach in the center. Suddenly they give a great cheer, and the coach trots out onto the field by himself… "What's the coach doing out there?" "Oh, he's going to play today. All by himself? He's had a lot more experience and training…they pay the coach well. We're all here to cheer and support him.

In this Source Unknown internet story the opposing team kicks off. The coach catches the ball, charges up field, but is buried under eleven opposing tacklers. He's carried off half- conscious. You think that's ridiculous? But isn't it the picture many of us have of the church? The members expect the minister to do the preaching, praying, witnessing, and visiting because he's paid to do the Lord's work and he's better trained.

But listen to God's Game Plan - Ephesians 4:11, 12, Christ has given the church apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers "to prepare God's people for works of service" …to train lay people to minister. Your pastor is meant to be a kind of playing coach, but pastors need our help to get the job done.

With a little regular prayer effort and planning we can have a successful life game and not face the impossible odds when the three minute flag goes up. Victory is ours if we follow our Playing Coach.

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