Trey is a very hard worker and a very generous soul.
He loves to use the money he earns to buy gifts for those he cares about…he especially loves to surprise people with gifts, just because.
It is an endearing part of who he is.
Thus, when I picked him up from the mall the other day and he said he had a surprise for me, well, I wasn’t surprised.
Knowing my deep and masochistic love for the Minnesota Vikings, he had bought me a jersey.
An expensive jersey.
It was a very kind and thoughtful thing to do.
Now, these jerseys are emblazoned with the name of a player on that team.
I love all the players on my Vikings…except one.
I can’t stand the sight of him in purple.
I can barely say his name without following it with an epithet.
The name on the back of his jersey should be “Incompetent”.
The name on the back of the jersey Trey bought me?
Now, this presents a conundrum.
If I wear the jersey people will assume I’m a fan of Cousins, which I am most certainly not.
I I don’t wear it, Trey would be hurt.
I’m wearing it.
The interesting thing about putting that jersey on was that it forced me to rethink my attitude toward Kirk Cousins.
We are on the same side after all.
He’s not a bad person.
He wants to do well.
He probably appreciates support more than most.
He’s not a Packer…
I can do this…maybe even with a good attitude.
In my world of metaphors we all wear some sort of team jersey.
Maybe it’s representative of our faith sect, or our political leanings, or some other way we choose to identify.
We recognize these jerseys and decide who is on our team and who isn’t…and we root for or against them as people based on those perceptions.
What if we all had to swap jerseys for a day?
Not just walk in someone else’s proverbial shoes, but wear their name on our backs?
Maybe…we’d find a tad more grace for each other when we put our own jersey back on.
Make your own application…
Very nice application Michael. Made me smile. Being a Vikings fan of course was part of my smile…but that’s not the whole story. Trey sounds like a fine young man. Also the fact that if we “wear” someone’s name, we may find ourselves with a different attitude. The times i have prayed for someone I loathe I have also found myself with a softer heart towards them.
Just curious…did you ever have a Tarkenton jersey?
I have not been without a Tarkenton jersey for most of my life until recently, when the last one just wore out.
I need to put that on my Christmas list.
That’s what I plan to be buried in… 🙂
What a loving gesture from your son! And, kudos to you for wearing it, despite your disdain for Cousins. It reminded me of my disdain for LA Dodger manager Dave Roberts, who mismanaged away the 2017 World Series after it was perfectly set up for a Dodger home victory in the 7th game. His choice of starting pitcher was unforgivable, considering who was available. It was a crushing defeat. Now last year was different, the Red Sox couldn’t be stopped, they were the better team. But, I have carried this utter contempt for Roberts since then . . . until I attended a game at Dodger Stadium in late June. It happened to be Christian Faith Night, something of which I was unaware when I bought the tickets. Following an exciting game (extra-inning walk-off home run), several of the Dodger players gave their testimonies. Also, Dave Roberts spoke about his faith in Christ. He talked about dealing with the criticisms that come with managing the Dodgers, and how his faith in Christ gets him through. It made me put myself in his shoes for a moment, not to mention that he is my brother in Christ. I may not agree with all of his managing decisions, but I no longer have the contempt I had for him. I see hime in a different light now.
Thanks Michael! Not sure if you saw that “100 Greatest Play’s Of All Time” list that nfl.com compiled…there are more than a few Vikings plays represented…including the time Tarkenton was scrambling ALL OVER THE BACKFIELD…not sure the opponent, but I vividly recall that being played over and over again on local news outlets back when I was a young puffy kid.
You get it…what if we could do that with everyone we see as the “other”?
I’m 61 and there are times when I still comb YouTube looking for Tarkenton highlights.
When I was a kid I got in trouble for making long distance calls to defend him on sports talk radio… 🙂
They brought a bunch of old timers back for last weeks game…I was in tears…
Nice! For me personally I occasionally go back to the Paul Allen KFAN call of the Minneapolis Miracle from two seasons ago…still get chills up my spine (that play was #8 on the all-time list btw). Back in the late 1990s I was working at a TV station in Minneapolis and had the honor of seeing Carl Eller in person in the lobby…he looked like he still could take on anyone!
I hear you…it’s like Allen was prepared for miracle!
That play got me in trouble…I was keeping track of the game while i was preaching.
The phone alerted me that NO had gone ahead late so i thought it was over.
My phone then blew up in front of God and the congregation…I had to wait until I got home to see what happened and celebrate…
Michael, I could get you a Nick Foles Eagles jersey if you’d rather……. 🙂
I knew that Kevin the Green Fowl would make an appearance… 🙂
You know what draws me out. 🙂
Or under that jersey, you could just get yourself a tattoo.
I’ll have to pass… 🙂
I do have Wentz on my primary FF team…I have to root for him in a lukewarm fashion…
Maybe you just don’t have the belly button for that Phillie Phanatic tattoo. 🙂 Or as large of a “canvas” for all those other tattoos.
I have an aversion to needles…anywhere…
This is a great article.
Got an SBC jersey ready for you 🙂
I’ll wear it while I teach on universal reconciliation… 🙂
Josh, but is the jersey one-size-fits-all? You know, universal. 🙂
Michael beat me to the universal joke. 🙂
Kevin and I seem to get in trouble together… 🙂
No, I stay out of the trouble of the theological arguments. I just make jokes about them. 🙂
Full disclosure, we know that people find “Southern Baptist” offensive. None of our newer church have it in their name. Our current SBC president had to reveal to his church that they were SBC upon being elected. NO joke.
So we’ve left reference to “SBC” off our jersey. INstead it will say “At least we’re not Lutheran”.
Now Josh is in trouble… 🙂
Actually, it’s ok because their field is fenced in… 🙂
Glad to laugh with you guys.
It’s our saving grace…and hopefully those that followed the last thread will follow this one to se how it works…
What a wonderful TGIF – and your sweet gift from Trey is a gift for us all to ponder. Now if only San Diego had a team we could root for…
Thank you, Pam!
When I moved to Florida, Miami was the only team in the state. I got my wife into football during Marino’s second year, and she was hooked. I’m a blessed man. The post-Marino years cured us of team loyalty, and we now follow quarterbacks and coaches, so our current team is KC. We’ll move on in time.
The exception is the Pats, as conversations with my wife are like this-” babe, you gotta admit that../No I don’t, they’re cheaters”.
this was kind of creepy… i just this week finished a little book titled “Cousins” for my family – there were 20 of us and our children have had trouble sorting out who is who…