Greetings from the sports desk located somewhere below decks of the Good Pirate Ship Red State. Yesterday was something of a sports junkie’s dream come true, as almost every significant professional sport was in action. Which, given the way things are going in this world, is quite the welcome diversion. Let’s dig in, shall we?
The highlight of the day, to me, was the Golden State Warriors home opener. Playing the admittedly hobbled Los Angeles Clippers, who are and will be minus Kawai Leonard for the season with a slight chance he might return for the playoffs, the Warriors raced out to a 19-point lead in the second quarter only to watch the Clippers roar back to take a one-point lead into halftime. The game remained a tight affair until the end, with Golden State eking out a 115-113 victory due in no small part to Steph Curry’s 45 points.
Curry scored 25 of his 45 points in the first quarter. He scored in every way imaginable. Long-distance three-pointers. Cutting through the lane, going past defenders as though an invisible force field protected him as Curry sped to the basket for a layup. Floaters from inside the paint. There was a quick yet unhurried elegant grace to his play, an athletic equivalent to when a musician such as Eric Clapton lays into a solo, every note smooth and polished to perfection through years of putting in the work via countless hours relentlessly practicing in pursuit of greatness. Such is the case with Curry, who, even on a night where the shots aren’t falling, as was the case in the Warriors season opener against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center, still emerged with a triple-double.
The world right now is a mess, to put it mildly. An incompetent, feeble President. Supply chain miseries promising only to get worse. China flexing its military muscle and rattling its saber at Taiwan. Labeling parents terrorists for the “crime” of objecting to their children being force-fed radical doctrine in school. It’s very, very difficult to be hopeful right now.
In such a world, deploying the kings and chronicles philosophy is a must. The kings and chronicles philosophy is Biblical, reaching back into the Old Testament. The books of I and II Kings and I and II Chronicles both deal with Israel’s history. I once heard a wise Bible scholar explain that the best way to look at these books, both covering the same period yet both very, very different in what they chose to detail, is that Kings is history from man’s perspective. At the same time, Chronicles is history from God’s perspective. For example: In Kings, we read all about King David’s failures and foibles, including the story of Bathsheba. Reader’s Digest version: David saw Bathsheba, the wife of one of David’s most loyal generals, bathing one night. The hormones kicked in, and David sweet-talked Bathsheba into an affair. He impregnated her. Unfortunately, there was no available cover story for this as Bathsheba’s husband was away in battle at the time. David called him back from the front and (ahem) “suggested” he “relax” with the Mrs. He said no, not while my men are fighting and dying in the field. David said, okay, go back to the troops … and gave orders to leave his loyal general with everything but a target on him in the next battle. Sure enough, the general was killed, and David swiftly married the, uh, grieving widow. In short, this was the kind of behavior that might make even a Democrat blush. Later on, Kings gives the whole sordid story of David’s son Absalom.
In Chronicles, there is no mention of either of these stories. David’s only failure considered worthy of note is when he decided to take a census, something strictly prohibited under Mosaic Law. Other than that, it’s all about the things David did right, the things leading God to call David a man after His own heart.
Once in a while, just maybe once in a while, can we try to see other people with the same level of grace we fervently pray God uses when He sees us? Can we stop complaining and start appreciating His creation? Can we lay politics aside for a minute and enjoy the performance, be it athletic or artistic, or what have you, of His children? God doesn’t stop loving people for holding the wrong political views. He doesn’t hand out free passes either; while the penalty of sin was forgiven at the Cross, the consequences of sin remain. This appropriately noted, acknowledging and praising performances such as Steph Curry’s last night will not immediately cast you into the lake of wokeism fire. Promise.