The Love and Hate of Fandom


This time of year is the best.
The time of year when the three major sports collide.
Baseball.
Football.
Basketball.
Highlights from all three… every night.

If you know me… you know that I am a big sports fan.
I love my sports… I love my teams.

I love the Michigan Wolverines.
I love the Chicago Cubs.
This year I have rediscovered my love for the Detroit Tigers.
Go Miggey!!!

I hate the Ohio Buckeyes.
I hate the Michigan State Spartans.
I hate the St.Louis Cardinals.
I hate the Chicago White Sox.
(If you are fan of these teams… please stick with me).

The reason for my love of these teams is pretty simple.
I’m connected to these teams.
My family has loved them for years.
We have become emotionally invested in them with each win and each loss.

The reason I hate the teams above is because of their hate for my teams.
Each one has a rivalry of some sort with one of my teams.

I love my team.
They hate my team.
They love their team.
I hate their team.

But really… do we have to hate each other?
The answer to that is of course no.
But with emotional involvement… comes feelings.
When feelings get hurt… it gets personal.
When it gets personal… friendships are broken.
All because of a game.

I believe God is competitive.
He competes for our love… daily.
He has won.
Regardless of if you give Him your love or not.
Because one day… you will.
That is all that matters.

Because of this… I believe in competition.
Because of competition… I am guilty of trash talk.
But my struggle this year has been this…
Coming across as loving others in my trash talk.

It’s not that I do not love people that are Buckeye fans.
It’s not that I do not love people that are Spartan fans.
It’s not that I do not love people that are Cardinals fans.
It’s not that I do not love people that are White Sox fans.

I DO love the people.
Just not their team.
But for some reason… that can get personal.

The difficulty is this… when do they stop seeing my love?
When they stop seeing my love… then I probably shouldn’t say it.
That’s where I struggle.

However… if what I say can be statistically proven…
Then… that is called truth.

Some statistics offend me.
Like the fact that the Cubs haven’t won a World Series in over 100 years.
But that is truth… because no one cannot argue that.

But with truth comes responsibility.
If a Cardinals or White Sox fan wants to make me mad…
they break out the 1908 chants.
It’s offensive… but it’s true.
Truth can be offensive… especially if it’s thrown in your face.

This truth is not just applied to sports.
It’s applied to many different scenarios.
I believe that we must be gentle with the truth that God gives us.

Ephesians 4:15
Instead, we will speak the truth in love,
growing in every way more and more like Christ,
who is the head of his body, the church.

So whether a sports fan or not…
Let’s do our best not to procrastinate love.

Who are the teams you love?
Who are the teams you hate?

This lesson has been a process.  In a few weeks… my family and I will move.
We will move to a town that I hated when I was in high school.  All because of sports rivalry.
Now… most likely… my son will some day play for that rival.
It is time to show them love.

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The Love and Hate of Fandom

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