Being a Michigan State fan in Go Blue country can be difficult at times. The irony is that there was a time in
my life that I did root for U of M. I had no real connection to the school and cheered for them because that is
what a lot of my friends did, too. At some point, I started making some connections with MSU and found
myself more invested in GO GREEN than Go Blue. Regardless of what color or school we may cheer for we
should all be pulling for the State of Michigan. We are the ones that tend to make it difficult to be fans
whether we are in MSU or U of M territory.
Many of you might be wondering, “Why is he talking about a college rivalry?” Well, despite being a Spartan
fan, I do have respect for many of the programs at Michigan. Also, having spent time being a coach for a
number of years, I appreciate motivational speeches by coaches. One that popped into my mind the other
day was Bo Schembechler’s famous “The Team” speech. I believe any fan or team can set aside their
differences and appreciate his words. “The Team, The Team, The Team” is why I am talking about a college
The word TEAM has been used as an acronym as well. T – Together E – Everyone A – Achieves M – More.
Schembechler discusses taking everything else, that some coaches and players focus on, and setting them
aside to become “The Team.” One cannot focus on themselves in order for the team to be successful.
Players/people cannot criticize other players/people and expect to be successful. Each person has to pour
themselves into the common good of becoming a team. Then success can happen because Together
Everyone Achieves More.
How is this any different than what Jesus is trying to teach us with The Greatest Commandment?
Jesus is telling us to set aside our egos, differences, personal agendas, etc. Instead, we are loved by God
every day and we must share that love with our neighbors. We are to love God and neighbor with
everything we have and as much as we would love ourselves. Jesus spent a lot of time with his disciples
trying to convey this message of “The Team.” I am trying to coach this team and stress the importance of
loving God and neighbor. Yet, there are days I feel like some of those first years of coaching. Every decision
you make is questioned, there are more complaints versus solutions offered, nobody wants to trust you
because you are the new person entering their life, and so on and so on. I do not just want to coach or lead
you, but I want to love on you at the same time. I guess the question we have to ask ourselves is, “Can we
set aside our personal feelings, leave the past behind us, trust the coach/pastor, and move forward while
we love on each other to become ‘The Team’ for God?”
Imagine a future for Marble Memorial where we not only speak about love, but people actually feel that
love when they walk in our doors or join us online. I understand that this last year has been hard on a lot of
people. Let’s be honest the last several years have been tough for Marble. In order for us to see this future,
we may have to let go of some things and have faith in some of the new things. Will this happen overnight?
Nope. But let’s put whatever is holding us up in the past or behind us so we can move forward. It’s not
about us but it is about God.
Again, Together Everyone Achieves More. So, Marble Memorial, let’s be “The Team, The Team, The Team!”
Peace be with you, neighbors.
(And I guess, Go Blue. LOL)