Johnny Football, Phil Jackson, and Jesus; Or, Why There Is No "I" in "Team"

Luke actually collects a great deal of counter-cultural wisdom from Jesus that suggests pursuing what the world finds important is going to be the death of our souls. In the section where we find this admonition to identify our treasure, we find thoughts about not worrying about worldly matters, about a foolish rich man who devotes his time to planning bigger barns and dies suddenly, his big plans left unfinished.

Mostly, though, the teachings of Jesus in the gospels try to orient us away from earthly grabs at power, money, and celebrity, and toward an understanding that the Kingdom of God and what it represents offer the only lasting joy.

Johnny Manziel is a twenty-year-old young man, and please believe me when I tell you that when I was his age I could care less about the Kingdom of God, and was in fact, a resident of the Kingdom of Me.

But I did at least understand that my actions had consequences; that those I loved and worked alongside expected me to live up to certain standards.

So I'm not writing because I want to pile on to the latest sports/celebrity train wreck. I'm writing because there are plenty of spiritual lessons this week, so perhaps I'll just close by echoing the teaching of Phil Jackson&mash;and Jesus.

Please, Mr. Manziel, remember how important it is to give your life in service of something bigger than yourself.

Please, stop chasing treasure that doesn't last.

And if you can't do that, could you at least please stop chasing it so visibly?

As the great NFL quarterback Drew Brees said this week, like it or not, that Heisman Trophy makes you a role model, Mr. Manziel.

For the sake of my kids&mash;of all the kids watching you grab at the high life&mash;could you please model a role a little more worth living?

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8/7/2013 4:00:00 AM