The Dallas Cowboys entered their Saturday night contest against the Buccaneers in Tampa Bay under pressure. Having lost recent games on missed field goals and fourth-quarter collapses, their goal of making the playoffs was in real trouble—meaning that, in a sense, their playoffs were starting against the Bucs. They simply could not afford another loss if they were to make the post-season, and that is pressure. After a brilliant first quarter, the Cowboys held on at the end and won the game, 31-15. They now carry their playoff desires for one more week, meaning another week of pressure is awaiting the Cowboys as they begin their preparation for their next playoff game—at home next Saturday against Philadelphia.
Pressure is a reality in sports, and it is also a reality in life. We face pressures at work, pressures in the economy, pressures in our finances, pressures in our families, pressures in our health—you name it, we live in a world filled with pressure. In fact, as one man said, life is like the weather—there are times of high pressure and times of low pressure, but there are no times of no pressure. Perhaps that is why Peter challenges us to respond properly to those pressures. He wrote: “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7).
The cares of life—the real pressure-producers that weigh us down and wear us out—can only be responded to in one way. They must be entrusted to the Lord who loves us and is more than able to handle them. When we feel the pressures of life bearing down on our hearts and minds, remember this: As we humble ourselves before God, it is in His mighty hand that our cares our safe. The pressures born out of the cares of life are safe in His hands.
Bill Crowder, Sports Spectrum Chaplain