FAST Blast: Musings on sports and marriage, Part 2

Musings on sports and marriage — Part 1

MARRIAGE, LIKE SPORTS, IS A TEAM EFFORT — requiring the care and commitment of two people with skills and idiosyncrasies, strengths and weaknesses, gifts and imperfections.

As with every team, a marriage is impacted by both the blunders and triumphs of the team members.

After reading the previous two paragraphs, you might be thinking: Sure, but tell me something I don’t already know. Actually, I might not be able to tell you something you don’t already know … but I do want to relay what I believe about marriage, for better or worse.

Let’s extend the sports-and-marriage metaphor — the marriage enterprise at its best is like scoring a flurry of 3-pointers, or recording a pivotal goal, or hitting a home run, or making a key defensive play or a huge save. At times like these, life is good and the sun shines bright and an out-and-back training run seems downhill both ways for both spouses.

At its worst, the team effort of marriage is like a painful injury — caused by a teammate during practice — or the extreme training teammates endure to prepare for the next game or the next season, like running ladders or suicide sprints … or fill in the blank with the severe workouts your coach devised.

One of my daughter’s soccer teams would run 200-yard sprints as a preseason workout — 20 consecutive 200-yard sprints. Yes, 20 200s.

One of my son’s soccer teams would run up an old ski hill. When I asked him how fast the coach expected his players to go, he said the intensity of the workout wasn’t in how fast they were moving (the hill was extremely steep) but in simply keeping their legs going. The next time I ran up a hill, my aching legs and lungs reminded me how true that is.

One of my basketball coaches had us run double suicide sprints. By the time you were done running the first one, your lungs felt like fire and your legs felt like a blend of lead and cooked spaghetti — paradoxical, I know — and then you had to keep going at full speed through a second suicide.

Well, I suppose you didn’t have to — but because of your dedication to the team, you did. You ran the sprints and felt the fire in your lungs and the distress in your legs with (and for) your teammates. This commitment that teammates make to each other in the crucible of training is comparable to the commitment couples make to each other when their marriage goes through a crucible, for however short or long.

Persevering together through the training of marriage makes it possible for a man and a woman to share the joy of the triumphs that follow.

To say there are many views of life and marriage is like saying there are many claims about financial investments or climate change or the favorite to win the next NBA championship. The question is, which view is true?

Every year, the Christian worldview celebrates Christmas as the day when Jesus of Nazareth entered the arena of human history to endure intense training for the sake of His bride. I pray that we find inspiration and strength in His example and His reality as we live out our marriages and other relationships.

This is the second in a series of blog posts that consider the relationship between marriage and sports.

— Bruce William Deckert © 2018

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2 Responses to “FAST Blast: Musings on sports and marriage, Part 2”

  1. Kayla Tyson Says:

    Thought-provoking and relatable. I love it!


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