It`s only been 2 weeks since the World Cup final and after a month of football it seems an age since the last ball was kicked. Cover your ears some of you: the football season starts next week! And for those who watched the final will remember something unusual happening when Mario Mandzukic, Croatia`s striker, chased after a ball that was heading back to the French goalkeeper. It seemed a pointless exercise when his team was already 4-1 down with about 10 minutes to go and because the keeper would normally just belt the ball back down the pitch too. But Mandzukic`s effort of `chasing after a lost cause` paid off when Hugo Lloris carelessly and bizarrely tred to dribble round the forward only for super Mario to tap the ball into an empty net. Great for football. A nightmare for Hugo.

It was a moment of both madness and determination rolled into one but it’s the determination that will stay with me for longer. So many people, including Christians, have a `can`t be bothered attitude` today about life and church and give up when success or a blessing is around the corner or they can`t handle hard work or if there is no personal gain they are not interested. Many people are not determined to chase after lost causes for the Glory of God or persevere when times are hard or because they often expect the same old, same old, but as Mandzukic found out, that`s not always the case.

Furthermore, the goal didn`t change the fact that France won the World Cup but it gave a boost to the Croatian players, manager, fans and to the country that `anything is possible`. What have you stopped being bothered about for God? Are you prepared to run around after lost causes because `you just never know`? I wonder how different our church may have looked now if those who had `given up` over the years kept `playing to the final whistle`?  


Pastor Steve