Rudy wanted it. He wanted it bad enough. The 1993 American sports film directed by David Anspaugh is the true story of Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger who harbored dreams of playing football at the University of Notre Dame despite significant obstacles. Because he wanted it bad enough, he overcame all obstacles in front of him and beat all the odds against him. Rudy is one of the best 25 sports movies of all time; watch it again for the first time.
We all need to get some “Rudy” in us. This weekend, my Eagles will need to get some “Rudy” in them. In order to have a chance at the playoffs, the Eagles must beat Arizona. Likewise, the Chiefs cannot lose to Denver, and whoever wins between the Saints and the Seahawks Monday Night will have the upper hand in the NFC west. And today, if Alabama is going to go undefeated, they must beat Auburn. The question for each team is “how bad do you want it?”
Sometimes we don’t want it bad enough. As soldiers of the Cross, we have a tendency to be complacent, inconsistent and nonchalant representatives of the Kingdom of God. It’s sad to say, but we can be down-right lazy in our Christian walk. Our actions, attitudes and aspirations don’t always match those of our Lord and Savior. Unfortunately, our lament tends to be this: “prone to wander, Lord I feel it; prone to leave the God I love.”
How bad do we want it? Sometimes, not bad enough. Sometimes, we’re not sober; sometimes, we’re not vigilant; sometimes, we don’t press toward the mark like we should. We don’t always hunger and thirst for righteousness as we should. Simply put, we don’t want it bad enough.
So what is “it” that we should want? First let’s get one thing straight: “it” is not things: silver and gold; fame and fortune; houses and lands. To their shame, the church of Laodicea wanted things. Jesus chided this church with these words: “You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked” (Revelation 3:17-18, NIV). We like this “lukewarm” church have replaced the gifts with the Giver; we want the goodies more than we want God. We want big cars and big houses and big churches; we want to be part of the “in” crowd that is in the “inner circle” of the church elite. This is not it.
How bad do you want it? The “it” that we should want more than anything is a relationship with Jesus Christ. He loves us, desires to spend time with us, to share with us, and to love us unconditionally. In return, He desires that we love Him with all of our heart, all of our mind, all of our body and all of our soul. We should want Him more than anything. The inspiring words of Rhea Miller’s song come to mind:
I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold; I’d rather be His than have riches untold; I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands; I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hand
Than to be the king of a vast domain And be held in sin’s dread sway; I’d rather have Jesus than anything This world affords today.
So, how bad do you want it? How bad do you want to be like Jesus? When we put God first, others second and ourselves last, we will receive the precious promises of Heaven; we are guaranteed to receive His presence and His protection and his power.
How bad to you want it? Can you sing this old song of the church: “To be like Jesus, to be like Jesus, all I want is to be like Him; so meek and lowly, so humbly and holy, all I want is to be like Him.”
I want Jesus, how about you?