this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Does the way we live our lives reflect our faith and values? Since moving to Louisiana, I have been a New Orleans Saints fan.This has not always been an easy task. There were those days when hapless fans called the ...
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|12-12-2009, 11:56 PM||#1|
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Does the way we live our lives reflect our faith and values?
Since moving to Louisiana, I have been a New Orleans Saints fan.This has not always been an easy task.
There were those days when hapless fans called the team the "Aint's" and wore paper bags over their heads to the games.
I also remember those years when I would come home from church, start watching a game on television and the Saints would be way ahead.
I'd fall asleep on the couch and somehow they would end up losing the game. Someone said at that time the New Orleans Saints could snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory, and this was not too far from the truth.
I used to lead chapel for pre-school children in a former church an hour from New Orleans. We would sing the song: "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands" and make up our own words and hand motions. "Let's sing "he's got the New Orleans Saints in his hands" one little guy shouted out one day.
"What sign should we do for the Saints?" I asked.
He circled the top of his head as though there was a halo there and then brought his hands together in front of his heart and made the sign for a broken heart.
Sadly, I knew exactly what he was talking about.
A recent Monday night football game pitted the Saints against the Patriots.
There was more than a little hoopla around this game in our area.
But if the truth be known, although the Saints were undefeated that night, you wouldn't know it in the rest of the country.
Shoot -- the Shreveport television market still broadcasts the Cowboys, with a far less superior record this year, as opposed to Saints games on Sundays.
The Saints beat New England in a record-setting way and finally New Orleans is getting some respect. Good for them and, good for New Orleans. New Orleans is a city still recovering from the devastation of the levees breaking after Katrina.
The population of the city is still lower than it was before the storm and it may never return to pre-Katrina levels.
Displaced New Orleanians have found exile in other places but many would rather be home again, but there is no home to go home to.
The quarterback for the Saints, Drew Brees, took a job in the city in spite of an uncertain future after Katrina.
His future had been pretty uncertain as well. He had had shoulder surgery in the off season.
It was on his throwing arm which could have been a big problem. It was not.
To say that Brees is popular in New Orleans is a vast understatement.
After games he often finds treats left by fans on his porch.
He loves the city and the people of the city love Brees back.
I have always been troubled about athletes who make such a big show of their faith. At press conferences, they always have to acknowledge Jesus as the reason they are successful.
Drew Brees is a Catholic who through his work ethic, leadership, charitable foundation, civic involvement, and just the way he lives his life, is how a person ought to live. As people of faith we should ask ourselves from time to time -- "Does the way I live my life reflect my faith?"
Barry Hoekstra is senior pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Alexandria.
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