College Football is back! This is such an exciting time of year for fans across the country to be hopeful that their favorite team will have a successful season.

When the team we root for is our alma mater, we are naturally optimistic about their chances of winning. Most of us view our team through a positive lens, even when most outsiders don’t.

On September 1, 2007, I was an Appalachian State University student sitting in “The Big House” when the Mountaineers pulled off the biggest upset in college football history. Knocking off the 5th ranked Wolverines was an unbelievable day, and I will never forget witnessing “my” team’s phenomenal accomplishment.

Needless to say, the love I have for App State is very strong, and my belief in the team’s chances each week (regardless of the opponent) is very hopeful. So tonight as ASU takes on the number 9 ranked Tennessee Volunteers, I have faith they can pull out the victory.

But whether APP STATE wins or loses throughout the season, my love for the for the team remains constant…and I’m guessing that’s how you feel about your favorite team too.

I think this kind of mindset can be compared to how we view people or other situations in life. Do we think the best or worst of others? Do we assume they will let us down, so we don’t really give them a chance? Do we continually love or is it circumstantial? Do we give up easily during tough situations or do we remain hopeful?

Jesus tells us the greatest commandments are to love God and love people. Since that’s our standard for viewing life, we need to remember what love really is.

The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13:7 (NLT), “Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”

As we gear up to watch our favorite college football teams return to action, let’s contemplate if our love for them is actually stronger than our love for God and people. Although hard to admit, at times I think it’s true.

Today, let’s be challenged to love in a way that thinks the best about people…believes that God will come through…and doesn’t give up during the losses. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I confess that sometimes my hope and love for my favorite football team is stronger than my love for You and other people. Please help me to develop a deeper and passionate love for You and others. Give me the strength to believe the best about people and not give up so easily. Thank you for the example of love You’ve shown us through Jesus. In His name I pray, Amen.