In many sports, the secret to success is to control an object. In hockey, it’s the puck. In soccer, American football and basketball, you want to control the ball. This can be difficult in basketball, because the ball is only dead if it goes out of bounds. When someone shoots the ball, everyone jockeys for position to grab it should the shot miss and the ball bounce off the goal. Coaches teach players how to get into position and keep their opponents away from the ball. The next time you watch a good basketball team, don’t just watch the shot arcing toward the rim. Watch the players work to block each other from a place near the goal.
Also keep this picture in mind when you hear Ephesians 4:26-27, ‘”In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.’ (NIV) That word foothold can also be translated “room,” “place” or “opportunity.” In other words, we must be careful when angry to block out the devil. We can’t allow him room to attack us. It takes active effort, just like positioning for a rebound in basketball.
How do we do this? We make sure we don’t stay angry. We work to reconcile as quickly as we can. Because if we hold a grudge, we give the opponent room to beat us.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.