UNPACK this

OBJ & the Kicking Net  

Published on September 30, 2016 | By

Odell Beckham Jr. is one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. Although his New York Giants lost a tough one to the Washington Redskins (29-27) last Sunday, he played well with seven receptions for 121 yards. 

Displaying Beckham's match-up with Redskins cornerback, Josh Norman, was highly publicized going into the game. Even though Beckham had the edge on the field, Norman’s team got the win and Beckham’s sideline antics became the bigger story. When things went wrong for the Giants, Beckham was seen throwing a temper tantrum, crying, and losing the battle with a kicking net.

Giants' head coach, Ben McAdoo, had this to say after the game via NJ.com: “Emotionally on the sideline in between the series, he needs to do a better job. That’s all of our responsibilities, mine included. But he needs to control his emotions better and be less of a distraction to himself and his teammates.”

As talented and competitive as Beckham is, Sunday’s sideline performance is obviously something he needs to work on. I appreciate intense and emotional athletes who show they care, but at the same time, there is a responsibility to stay calm and poised.

I’ll admit that I was a fiery athlete growing up, and unfortunately my unacceptable emotions still come out while driving in traffic or when technology doesn’t work! We all have certain emotions that get the best of us if we allow them too, but as followers of Jesus we must remember the spirit that lives within us. We must trust God to give us the strength to have self-control, even when circumstances are unfavorable.

Our mindset is off and our hearts are in the wrong place when we lose it and allow our emotions to make us act foolishly. These are the moments we must pause...pray...and ask God for peace. 

The Bible reminds us in Proverbs 25:28 (ESV), "A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.”

James 1:19-20 (NLT) challenges us by saying, "Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires."

It’s easy to laugh at Beckham for his silly sideline temper tantrum and his hilarious fight with the kicking net, but let’s use the example as an encouragement to take an inventory of our own emotions and the actions that result from them. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYERHeavenly Father, I confess that I’m a moron when I allow my emotions to get the best of me. I pray that You would help me be aware of these times, so that I can make the necessary changes before losing control. Teach me to rely on Your spirit to guide me, as I lean on prayer during intense moments and unfortunate circumstances. Thank you for Your grace. I pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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