March Madness is basketball. Awesome amazingly fun games. Too many memories to bore you with here but two Kansas championships are the highlights!
March gladness. We are to be glad as Psalm 100 has instructed us. “Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.”
March sadness. I lost two grandparents in March. But there is gladness in knowing that with each day I am getting closer to a time that we will be reunited. This is the hope of resurrection spoken of in I Corinthians 15.
March madness. School teachers scramble to prepare students for high stakes testing next month. Here, teachers are evaluated partially on how well those students perform on the test. Madness is when a new student arrives in my classroom from Vietnam. He does not speak English, but he must take the test and when he inevitably fails the state will say I failed in teaching him.
March gladness. Although it’s late this year in Louisiana, it means Azaleas. Never thought I’d look forward to the blooming of flowers but it is a sight to see! Come on down friends and family and check it out!
March sadness. A former student of mine is in the news for the third time since I had him a year ago. Involved in two shootings, one fatal, and then the other day he got shot. Sadness for his life, for the lives he’s affected, and for the life lost in the shooting this past week. A 17 year old is on the run from that shooting, the brother of another student I’ve taught. Who will stand in the gap as Ezekiel 22:30 put it: “I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.”
March gladness. Psalm 30:11-12 Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me; O LORD, be my helper.” You have turned for me my mourning (sadness) into dancing; You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness, That my soul may sing praise to You and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.
The other day I posted on facebook something that revealed both my passion for sports and how that passion at times takes my eyes off of what is most important.
I wrote how I love March for the sports. Basketball, baseball and golf all have marquee events in the next month which I get really excited about. I spend a lot of time reading, watching, and generally daydreaming about these events and how my teams will do. It’s fun, a stress reliever from the daily grind.
Sunday as our pastor is continuing through a series on John it hit me like a ton of bricks. We listened to Pastor Bridges exposit the story of the last supper and the foot washing at the last supper. If you’re not up on the chronology of things related to the last week of Jesus life (before resurrection) it happened very quickly. He entered Jerusalem on what we call Palm Sunday. Thursday of the week was the last supper, praying in the garden, and arrest. Friday was the trial, crucifixion and burial. And Sunday it all ended with the resurrection! 4 days and it was all over! Everything!
Four of history’s most important days happened at this time of year. This year they fall smack in the middle of all of the sports craziness that I spoke about earlier. And what did I post about on facebook? The sports. My heart sank as I realized that what was on my mind was sports and not the death, burial, and resurrection of our Savior.
LORD forgive me of my wayward thoughts at this important time of year. Allow me to enjoy these sporting events that you gave me a love for, but not at the expense of meditating on the 4 days that changed everything, for me, for my family, my friends, forever. Allow me to remember the words of the hymn that I’ve always loved. “Man of Sorrows, what a Name, for the Son of Man who came, ruined sinners (and sports fans) to proclaim, Hallelujah, what a Savior!” Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!