You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. –1 John 4:4
Back in the 1950s, Kansas City had a baseball team, a team that was perhaps more consistently mediocre than the Royals of recent years. What really riles longtime Kansas City baseball fans, even after fifty years, is the sense that the A’s of those years were an unofficial farm team for the New York Yankees. As evidence of the supposed collusion between the two team’s front offices, students of the game note a series of sweetheart trades–sweet for the Yankees, but sour for the A’s–that sent washed up has-beens west and up-and-coming stars east. The two most notable exports from Kansas City were Bobby Shantz and two-time-MVP Roger Maris.
Maybe it wasn’t a setup, however. Maybe there was something in the water. There’s something about putting on the pinstripes it seems, that brings out greatness in players. Similarly, there’s something about putting on the uniform of a perennial loser to help a player underachieve.
Can you imagine giving the pep-talk before the Yankees take the field? “You’re the Yankees! Go out and win.” How easy must it be to go out into the field knowing the Andy Pettite or Roger Clemons is pitching? That is, I suppose, why Joe Torre received no love after last season. Handed a slew of superstars and the keys to the game’s most storied franchise, he couldn’t deliver championships for years on end.
How much more confidence should we have, Christian? We’re on the greatest team in history with the ultimate teammate in Jesus. It’s like having Cy Young, Nolan Ryan, and Sandy Koufax all rolled into one with plenty of ability to spare. Why, then, do we behave as if we’re playing for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays or some other long-time loser?
Greater is he who is in us. That’s too easy to forget.