Learning from our Six Nations heroes
This weekend is our reward for making it through January; the drama of Six Nations rugby begins.
Rugby has changed over the years. The speedy players used to be the weedy ones. Their best tactic was to use their pace to avoid getting hit.
Now, it’s common to run the ball down the centre of the field and take the hit. This draws the opposition toward the middle of the pitch and opens up space out wide.
So pro players will train hard to be both fast and strong – a tactic we Christians could learn from.
In our society, speaking the truth in love will feel like running down the centre of the field – we’re going to get hit. But our only alternative is to avoid any opposition.
And this will involve avoiding God’s truth.
So how do we speak truth into the big questions of our time: individual happiness, relationships, identity? Do we run wide or train our hearts and minds to take the hit?
Daniel stood before the powerful king Nebuchadnezzar, who’d execute him unless he told him what his dream meant.
But Daniel was ready for this moment; he’d been training.
He’d prayed for God’s will and wisdom. He’d spent time with other believers seeking their help (Daniel 2:18) and he’d worshipped God for answered prayers (Daniel 2:20-23).
Daniel’s regime of word and prayer meant he was ready to run down the centre. And this is what he does when standing before the king.
He speaks truth to power, plainly.
He says that no man can explain the meaning of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, “but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries.” (Daniel 2:28)
So what will we do? Will we train to run into the centre with Jesus’ truth or will we go wide and hope we never get tackled?