I grew up in a Christian home, knowing everything that there was to know about the Bible, but it wasn’t personal for me. I had never submitted my life to the Lord; I was just going through the motions. I tried to find satisfaction in a lot of different things: partying, drugs, friends, school, or sports. Everything would work for a little while but then fade away. I needed something that was permanent and satisfying and I finally found that when I submitted my life to Christ and found that He is real. Finding my purpose and satisfaction in Him, I was then able to use all those other things to bring more glory and honor to God and see those things as blessings rather than my identity.
The older I get, the more I’m learning that nothing is about me; it’s all about the Lord. The further I go in my career, the more I realize that it’s not about what I do, it’s about reflecting Christ and showing the world how great He is. Everything is from the Lord.
Next year will be my seventh season in the NFL. There’s a lot of turnover in the NFL but this past year, my second with the Eagles, I was able to build a lot of depth in the relationships with the guys on the team and dive into the Scripture with them more. I was also able to get to know the city better and see how they needed to hear the Gospel so that we can jump in and serve them.
A lot of times, people look at the hallmark times as the year’s highlights but for me, the highlights are the little things that make eternal differences. It’s when a new guy comes to Bible study and starts asking a lot of questions and seeking after God. It’s then when their eternities are changed forever. A lot of times, these things may go unnoticed by us, but God is at work. Our Bible studies are great in that way because anytime people hear the truth from God’s Word, they are attracted to it.
“Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” – Psalm 119:105
I see my role on the team, and in the NFL, as a servant of God. I try to tap into the ways God has gifted me—my strengths and weaknesses—so that I can be used to serve the guys on the team. The best leaders are the greatest servants. If you look at Jesus, He served all those around Him while still having a great strength about Him. I see that when I am able to serve the guys on my team, I am able to build trust with them and connect with them on a deeper level. I just try to model who Jesus is and emulate Him in my own life.
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” – Matthew 6:33
This verse in Matthew has been my life verse since I first came to Christ. It’s funny because this is a verse that I’ve clung to for 14 years now but it’s being refreshed to me everyday. So many times my heart wants to put my career, my wife, my kids or my friends first but I always go back to this verse. When I seek Christ first, everything else falls into place. It’s amazing that I can learn so much more about myself and my relationship with the Lord constantly through the same verse. This is such a testament to the fact that the Scriptures are living and active. So it’s by God’s Word that I find my strength each day.
“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12
Chris Maragos is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing monthly articles and opinions.
Check out Chris’ Increase profile here: https://theincrease.com/author/chris-maragos/
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