Written by Daniel Hazard
Brad Johnson, at 44 years old and only 10 years removed from winning a Super Bowl title, now has trouble performing even simple tasks because of the incredible punishment his body took playing football.
Creator, thank you for play. Play is important. Sports are important. They can teach so much about teamwork and community. They can teach us about fair play and grace and they help human beings push themselves to discover the limits of their talents. But they can also push us beyond our limits. They can preach winning at all costs. They can destroy the most physically gifted among us. God, where is the line?
I pray for Brad Johnson and all those former players whose physical and mental health has been so greatly affected by playing the game they loved. I pray for those young men who will be drafted to play professional football over the next few days, many of whom will have similar struggles after their careers. I pray for those fans and players who want the game to be safe but don't want to lose the violence that makes it so exciting and entertaining. There aren't a lot of easy answers. Sports bring out the best in us O Lord. They can also bring out the worst. Help us all to know the difference. Amen.