Does that bring back memories!    32176_f5b5bf19a3aba022690e1fcf958060ad_0edfaefda77751a01d900f56da0f1780[1]
I can remember I loved/hated that game.  Loved it for the challenge and the energy of everyone involved.   Hated it because there was always…..PAIN.
The older we got in school…. the harder the boys could sail those balls through the air and smack you on the leg or in the middle of your shoulders as you retreated from the line of fire!   Most of the balls were those 10-12 in round balls which hurt bad enough….. but…. it was those little 3-4 inch size that could really leave a whelp for hours!

For those of you who have never played the game …..let me see if I can paint a clear of enough picture for you.
You have 2 teams of equal or close to equal players chosen by either the numbering off method….1-2-1-2-1-2-1-2…….or the Captain of each team calling out the names of the cream of the crop all the way down to the runts of the litter….    A row of balls are then lined up on the center court line as the players line up against the wall.    Each player is SUPPOSED to keep one hand on the wall in order for everyone to have the same advantage from the start.

The whistle blows….. and….chaos erupts!!!
Most everyone charges to the center line to try to retrieve at least one ball if not more before the other team can get theirs….the object now is to hurl your ball toward the opposite side of the court to hit whoever they can….some less aggressive team members lag back …. hiding behind the stronger ones…..waiting for a loose ball to snag and make their own attack.
Once a ball has made contact with the target…. they are now “out” and must leave the court to sit on the sideline only now to cheer on their remaining team mates who are still fighting the raging war in front of them, throwing…. running…. jumping……..dodging…..until,  there is no one left on the court from their team or the opposing team!
However…. IF someone were to catch one of the balls that was thrown at them…. the player who threw the ball was out…. and ….. one person from the team of the “catcher” is now allowed to return to the game from the sidelines.

Some games could be over in a very short time while others seemed to go on for what seemed to be forever.   Once over…. we would line the balls up again ….compare our whelps with our friends……. stretch our arms to the wall and wait for that whistle to blow…..determined this time…. to survive all the way to the end of the game!

I am not sure what got me thinking about that game…. Haven’t really thought about it for sometime…and then….. the analogy!

We…. are on a team….
We …… as Christians….. have been chosen…. not by the numbering method…..1-2-1-2-1-2   OR…. by a chosen Captain choosing by rank, status or stature….We…. have been chosen by THE Captain as an equal… a vital asset to His team.
Life challenges are then lined up on the center court line while we stand at a safe distance with our hands resting on our “Rock”….
When the whistle blows…. we find ourselves charging full speed ahead to retrieve those things we know or think we are to have.   Some of us, however, lag back, lacking confidence or maybe the intimidating glare of the opposite team will keep us from pursuing so we are content to just wait until that loose opportunity rolls past us before picking it up.

The other team rushes the line as well and with brutal force hurls circumstances at us that …. coming from them…. are not opportunity’s but situations that could….. if hit with one… could leave anywhere from a small red mark or a monumental whelp that will last for sometime.    Those little ones that look less intimidating when resting on the line are sometimes…. in the right hands…. are much more accurate….and deadly…. We continue in the battle…… throwing…. running…. jumping……..dodging…..and then from out of no where…. SMACK!!!

We have been hit!   You know what that means….we are now “out” of the game.    We must walk off of the battlefield and watch and cheer on our other team mates as the battle continues in front of us…..It looks like the end for us as we go over the I should’ve…. could’ve….would’ve and if only’s in our minds…. but we have forgotten one thing…..

THE Captain…. is on our team…. and He is a Pro…. a master at Dodgeball!!!
He is not only knocking out the other team players by flinging His own at them…. but… He has now caught one of the enemy’s ball and ….. you know what that means?!?!?!?!?
You got it!!!    He looks over at you…. calls your name…. and …. You are now BACK in the Game!

You may have been counted out by the worlds view of things…. but… when you have the CAPTAIN of the game on your side…. you will NEVER be forever OUT!


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