President’s Perspective: Advance Together or Hero Ball?

“Will this be their year?” was the question posed during a segment of an NFL pre-game show on the Baltimore Ravens. One of the hosts commented that as long as their All-Pro quarterback Lamar Jackson stays healthy, they’ll be in the hunt. Her partner agreed, but added he needs to work on his accuracy and stop playing “hero ball” — i.e., trying to win the game by himself (taking hits instead of going out of bounds, forcing throws instead of making the easy pass, etc.). Hero ball might win a game or two, but that style of play won’t bring home a championship. His point was, Jackson has to get better as a quarterback and learn to do less, not more, in order for his team to go all the way.

Hero ball doesn’t advance the kingdom of God very far, either. Believers and churches that leverage each other’s gifts and strengths advance the kingdom better than one can alone. An example in Scripture is the church at Antioch (Acts 11:19ff), which was birthed when some disciples who had fled persecution in Jerusalem courageously shared the good news to Jews and Gentiles. These disciples came from different backgrounds but shared the conviction that everyone should have the opportunity to hear the gospel and be reconciled to God. God’s hand was with them, and many souls were saved because they advanced the gospel together.

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