23 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. – Matthew 5:23-24
Scripture makes clear that we were created to worship God with our entire lives, bringing glory to Him in whatever we do. Competitive sports is one of the best settings to bring glory to God, not just because it’s typically a public platform, but because it’s worship that involves our entire heart, mind, body, and soul. For this reason, we must have the right mindset and motivation when it comes to competing because if you’re not worshipping God, you’re most likely worshipping yourself.
With this in mind, let’s reflect on this passage in Matthew 5. Jesus is giving His masterful “Sermon on the Mount” and is completely redefining what it means to be human. This particular command places reconciliation with people before worship. In order for us to adequately worship and bring glory to God, we must first settle the relationships around us. Are you harboring anger or bitterness towards a brother or sister? Since God has reconciled us to Himself in Christ, we have the opportunity to strive for reconciliation in all our relationships.
I cannot help but think of how this practice could radically influence your teams. Far too often, a season is ruined because there is a conflict between teammates, affecting the chemistry of the entire team. Moreover, our worship on the field to God is tainted if we have unreconciled relationships off of it. On your own, this challenging command seems impossible and too idealistic. How do you forgive and be reconciled to those who have hurt you or vice versa? Fortunately, with the Spirit of God within us, guiding and leading us, all things Jesus has called us to do are possible.
- Thank God for providing reconciliation between you and Him through Christ.
- Prayerfully reflect over this passage. Are there relationships in your life that are in need of reconciliation?
- Ask God to lead and strengthen you by His Spirit to seek reconciliation with those around you.