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Monday, May 30, 2011

Don't Get LAX!

I'm not very sporty or athletic (just ask any of the missionaries I played basketball against today), but my second semester of college I found one sport that I like to play as much as I like to watch: lacrosse.  Despite my south Texas upbringing, lacrosse tops my list over football, basketball (for sure--I am horrible at b-ball), or soccer.  It's the fastest sport on two legs!  You get to hit dudes with a stick and wear pads!  And you get to fling balls at people--I mean, goals--at incredible velocities!  What's not to like?  Basically, lacrosse involves a lot of running, passing a fist-sized solid rubber ball to teammates using a pole with a net on the end, body-checking opposing players to try to obtain the ball, and shooting the ball at a net guarded by a goalie.  I won't get into all the rules, but trust me--it's killer!

I played defense and goalie (I wasn't very skilled at shooting or passing, just getting the ball away from people), which was way fun because I was able to do a lot of hitting and blocking.  I quickly learned why we wore pads--getting hit with a metal stick and with a hard ball at 90 mph hurts!  Bad!  If I hadn't worn my protective gear I would've totally gotten killed, no question about it.  Even with pads on I collected a wide variety of bruises, scars, and welts (which actually made me feel pretty hardcore).  With balls flying at you and dudes body checking you left and right you learn to rely on your gear and your pole to not only help protect you, but to help you win too. 

See where I'm going with this?  In the game of life, we aren't guaranteed an easy win--in fact, we're pretty much promised a rough ride.  Whether it's something we cause ourselves, something someone else does to us, or if it's just a consequence of the natural flow of life, we are all banged up and bruised basically every single day, although usually not physically.  Paul put it this way:
For we wrestle [play lacrosse] not against flesh and blood, but...against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness...
Paul then goes on in Ephesians chapter 6 to describe the armor of God which shields us against the attacks of our opposing team, led by the devil himself.  It's interesting to me that the only offensive weapon he mentions is "the Spirit, which is the word of God"--the scriptures and our own knowledge of what is true.  I know that if we trust in the protection God has promised us and learn to use our "lax poles" (aka the sword, aka the Spirit), we will win, no matter the opposition. 

Suit up!
 The Prophet Joseph Smith, who suffered intense opposition and persecution his entire life, said this:
...Persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent...
So gear up!  Trust in God!  Start by praying, reading God's word, and keeping His commandments.  And in no time, we'll be kicking back at the Victory Party in our Heavenly Home. 

Much Love,

Elder Spendlove

2 comments:

  1. Armor of God like LAX padding....I like. God's word will protect us and help us win this game of life. Even with some checks to the face.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lacrosse is awesome. Great comparison!

    ReplyDelete

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