The Return of Mr. Irrelevant

Yes, the NFL draft was upon us yet again. I watched parts of it but not all, since I thought it might be better to actually have a life today and not live in front of the television for hours and hours.

I did see where Ole Miss quarterback Chad Kelly (nephew of former great Jim Kelly) was the last player drafted in the last round of the draft. At least I knew who he was and the school he was from.

Frankly, I’m not a fan of the term Mr. Irrelevant. It’s a bit of an insult to the player who gets taken last. At least he got drafted, unlike multitudes of others who would probably  love to be in his place.

It got me thinking again. Social media can be a tough place for those who feel the constant need to be approved and admired. It can be a lonely forum for those who base their identity by how many people like and comment on their posts, pictures, memes, updates, etc.

I know because I used to be there. It took some time away from Facebookland to get my head straight and my thinking right.

You might feel like Mr. Irrelevant when you post something witty or inspired and you can almost hear the crickets in the background from the lack of responses.

You might even feel like nobody appreciates you or even knows you exist as you go about your normal daily existence. You wonder if what you do (or even you yourself) matter to anyone.

God says you matter. The cross says you count. Jesus literally thought you were to die for.

I’ve found that God always puts people in your life who will see you. They will be witnesses to your life and testify to the fact that you have value. You probably won’t have very many of these people throughout your life, but those will be your true friends.

You are not irrelevant. You do matter.


Mr. Irrelevant Strikes Back

They’re baaaaaack.

That’s right. The NFL Draft has returned, and all those wonderful commentators have come back to give their pick-by-pick analysis all the way from the very first player selected in the first round to the very last player selected in the final round (ignominiously known as Mr. Irrelevant).

There have been some great picks (like Denver selecting Paxton Lynch in the first round) and some head-scratchers (a kicker in the second round?)

If you’re actually paying attention to all this, you know that we still have rounds 4-7 left tomorrow. Then last but not least is Mr. Irrelevant himself.

I love that in the kingdom of God there’s no such thing as Mr. Irrelevant. Every person is important because every person matters to God.

Many of you probably know what it’s like to feel irrelevant. You can be in the middle of a group and feel totally left out of a conversation. Or you could be the only one not invited to a get-together where later everyone who was there shares photos through all the social media outlets.

I love the fact that when God chose you, it wasn’t because you were the only one left. It wasn’t like He got you because He was stuck with you, like the team captain with the last pick in kickball.

God was intentional and purposeful when He made you. He was just as deliberate in choosing you. God wants and desires a relationship with you that will bring out your very best self.

There is never a moment that goes by when you are not on God’s mind and in God’s heart. Never. Remember that when you feel forgotten and abandoned by everyone else in your life.

As for Mr. Irrelevant, some actually ended up making an NFL team. A few even ended up in the Super Bowl. Not bad for the last man chosen.


Four Days Left in 2015

Note: if you still have unfulfilled resolutions that you haven’t given up on for 2015, now’s the time to get crackin’. You have four days left. That’s all.

Four days.

It seems like it wasn’t that long ago I was bidding a fond farewell to 2014 and wondering what 2015 would look like.

Speedy. 2015 has looked and felt and gone by speedily. Much more so than 2014.

So what are you planning to do in 2016 to improve your life? What are your resolutions and goals for the new year?

After hearing Aaron Bryant’s sermon, I think my goal is the same as the prophetess Anna from Luke 2– to do whatever it takes to get to where I see the Redeemer in my life and that He becomes the focus of my single-minded devotion.

Also, I’d like to see the Tennessee Titans not look like the Bad News Bears of the NFL. It’s gotten embarrassing to watch the games.

I’d like to see people who profess the name of Jesus in Nashville being more visible (and I put myself in that category). A friend of mine posted on Facebook that 95% of the churches in Nashville are declining.

So much for Nashville being the belt buckle of the Bible belt. We have a lot of church buildings, but not nearly as many vibrant, biblical churches that are actively engaging in a Acts 2-type lifestyle of missional living and intentional community.

As I’ve mentioned before, maybe it’s time for most of us (me included) to stop merely going to church and start being the church. The difference is one hour on Sunday and one hour on Wednesday versus 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

So there we are. That’s what I hope to see in 2016. Maybe those Titans might even start being competitive if they can get decent front office leadership and ownership that actually cares about winning.

But that’s another blog for another day.


The Not-So-Super Bowl


Yes, I know. Super Bowl XLVIII was two days ago. Yes, I watched it. Well, most of it.

If you watched it, you probably know that it wasn’t exactly a nailbiter. There was no thrilling finish. In fact, you might say the contest was basically over when the Denver center snapped the ball over Peyton Manning’s head. The Broncos never recovered after that.

To be more specific, I watched the game right up to the point where the Seattle Seahawks scored to make it a 36-0 game. At that point, I turned off the game and watched a couple of episodes of Twin Peaks, which were much more dramatic and suspenseful than the game ever thought about being.

I’ve never seen a team play worse than the Broncos did in that game. I’ve never seen a team so demoralized as those players in orange and blue.

Even the commercials (in my opinion) weren’t all that great. There were a few that I liked, but mostly they were like the game– overhyped and underperforming.

I do think it’s better to watch a game like this with friends or family or a combination of both. It’s good to have a few board games handy in case the game gets out of hand (sorta like this one did).

I’m glad I’m not a Denver Broncos fan. I’d be really depressed right about now. I’m not really a Seahawks fan either. I just wanted the game to be close and for both teams to play well. As it turned out, it appears somebody forgot to tell most of those Denver Broncos there was a game that night.

As I get “mature” (a nice way of saying “older”), I find that I prefer a good movie to a sporting event. I don’t know why. I just do.

I do however hope next year’s Super Bowl is a bit more competitive. At least make the commercials fun to watch.