I got an opportunity this week to attend the NFL 2019 draft in Nashville Tennessee, a rare opportunity for this African child, but somehow God’s favor got me to the experience. It’s crazy to imagine how people gather together and enjoy sports. There was literally more than 200,000 people in attendance. The energy, glamour, and excitement all across downtown Nashville and the surrounding areas was all that was in the air…road closed, hotels full and uber rides got expensive and yet, this was not a hindrance for the many who stood in the rain to experience the draft.
As my friends and I experienced the NFL, we couldn’t help but ask ourselves about why the same energy, excitement and joy is not expressed in the church. See, the excitement and joy at the sports arena bring people together, all people, from all over the world, old and young, size, sports fanatics, and the ever growing business of sports betting- people believe in their teams so much, so that they invest all their emotions and resources for the sake of their teams. They believe that they are part of the teams by putting on their team jerseys, even though they may never get to meet the players. Immediately you put on a jersey, a conversation is spurred, you become a friend, a brother, a sister, you become part of a sport family and in that moment, you all can cheer on the team and inspire one another to celebrate the team and vice versa when the team loses.
Imagine with me if this was the case for the church! Imagine with me what it would look like to see the family of God in a similar manner! Gathered together, with so much joy, expectation and energy. Believing that we are part of something good, positive and purposeful, believing that we are part of something transformative. I argue that many of us need to experience church in a beautiful way and as my friend Jenny says, some of our churches could use a little bit of joy.