Tim Keller has a book out called Counterfeit Gods. In the book, he tells the story of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Esau, Jonah, and Zaccheus and uses their stories to teach about idolatry. From the book, “The human heart takes good things like a successful career, love, material possessions, even family, and turns them into ultimate things. Our hearts deify them as the center of our lives, because, we think, they can give us significance and security, safety and fulfillment, if we attain them.”
So, what is an idol? Keller explains, “It is anything more important to you than God, anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God, anything you seek to give you what only God can give.”
If we’re honest, it’s easy to find idols in sports ministry. Things like number of participants, revenue, wins and losses, etc. can all be made into idols and become “ultimate things.” I hope that for those of us in sports ministry that we can find our contentment and security in God. I pray that we can rejoice in the successes of our sports ministries and yet in the midst of that, still find our significance in God.