We’ve seen several “social justice” messages on the back of NFL helmets for several seasons. Two in particular state, “Stop Hate. Choose Love.” These slogans, mere words, came to life when the players removed their helmets out of respect for an injured Bills player Monday night. For several minutes you could hear a pin drop in that crowded stadium.
Players from both teams, coaching staffs, fans with jerseys from both sides quietly crying, softly praying. No screaming of unfair treatment, no accusations of some people being treated unfairly — only prayers lifted up for the life of a friend, a teammate, an athlete, a son. The color of his jersey, the team name on his helmet didn’t matter to one single person in that stadium. What mattered was saving his life.
It’s often said that tragedy brings out the best in people, not manufactured, drama- filled “tragedies” that only divide. What happened to Damar Hamlin Monday night could have happened to any of those players. I believe the reaction would have been the same; the concern, the tears, the prayers, suspending the game. There were no splintered groups shouting their “cause.” The stadium was full of people, millions watching on TV that came together quietly, prayerfully be”cause” there was someone in need. Americans rally, we pray. Power is put behind those prayers when we end them “in the name of Jesus.”
If we could tone down the “causes” and learn to love one another the way Jesus commands us to love, then peaceful, loving scenes like in the stadium that night wouldn’t be so uncommon. The only WIN that’s priceless and eternal is when the Victory is in Jesus!