Last night as I watched the Super Bowl in my living room, I looked around me and thought about how weird it all was. We’re all definitely a bunch of weirdo’s.
“This is like the Super Bowl party for misfits” – me
“Yeah? How is that any different from the rest of our life?” -Sher
Sher was right, it’s not, everything we do looks odd from the outside. The Super Bowl is what was different. There is just something about the Super Bowl that screams America, screams Bud Light, screams money, girls, sex, rock and roll. The dream we’re all after. Right? At least that is what the commercials, and the half time show, and the football players’ model wives say to us; and we all gather for this yearly event even though most of us stopped caring about who won a few weeks before, when our respective teams lost, and we watch and eat and wait for a funny commercial.
Throwing a party the way we throw a party for such an event has me continuously looking back and smiling. I was sitting with thirteen other people, many of whom have experienced isolation because of homelessness, substance abuse, mental illness, or they were foster children. Others have grown up without lacking the necessities for living with stability in society, but are drawn here because of something else. Some people have made it, they are successful out there, but still play the misfit role; in their family, in their workplace, in their church. We’re all here, mixed together, and though it might look a little funny, really it looks a lot like any other Super Bowl party. Snacks on the table, beef in the crock pot, and a cheese dip that could kill you if you ate too much.
In part, Sher and I were able to move into the neighborhood because we were educated, raised in families with parents who loved us and were there when we needed them. SO much more than that, we are able because of Christ, because God dwells among us, and was already here long before we moved into this home.
One of our friends who lives across the street and has been coming to our small group weekly, showed up last night surprised to find out that instead of talking about Jesus, we had borrowed two TV’s and were having a Super Bowl party. His excitement was electric. About an hour later I found out that this was his first Super Bowl he had ever watched in the fifty years of his life. It was so sweet to have him with us.
Most things can become sacred if you let God be God in them. The Super Bowl and everything associated with it does not represent much good, but last night was a holy place, in a way. It is many nights here, where we gather to pray and eat and talk with each other. Last night just seemed a little more sacred, more dear, I could sense the closeness of God to us all as we consumed bags of chips and watched Madonna lip sync… Weird. I know. Weird.