Friday, September 10, 2010


Last night, the National Football League opened its 2010 season. I watched some of the battle between the defending Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints and the Minnesota Vikings. As I watched players pounding each other and then bouncing back up ready to do it again, I couldn’t help but think about an issue that isn’t discussed much in small groups—intensity!

I touched a lot of intensity this week. I met with a small group leader who finds himself in the midst of some life-altering family pain. I spoke with another leader whose eyes watered-up when we began talking about the pain of a lack of forgiveness. I prayed with a couple who’s sorting through the pain of a forced family separation due to a job. The intensity of life that pounds us like a middle linebacker is real and it seems to be everywhere!

I suppose this shouldn’t come as a surprise. The intensity of life in a fallen world has been on display for a very long time. Read the words of the Apostle Paul in his second letter to the church in Corinth:

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 (NIV)
This intensity beats on all of us. In some seasons it hits harder than others. Yet the intensity we all face is not always shared openly in our small groups. It should be!

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