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WEEK 13 | GOD (not ball) IS LIFE

Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness.

Ball is life. That is something we talk about a lot. A parent told me that a former NBA player who now coaches an AAU team told her, “If your daughter doesn’t eat, sleep, and drink basketball, you don’t need to bring her to us.”

I understand why he would say that. Greatness requires great sacrifice, but don’t chase greatness and forget about what is really important.

I heard a Chick-fil-a store owner speak this week. He said, “We all have three buckets: a family bucket, a work bucket, and a _____ bucket.” He said it’s crucial that we identify what fills that third bucket and prioritize it.


As a believer, my third bucket is Jesus, and while I might say ‘Ball is Life,’ I work hard to make sure I don’t put ‘ball’ in front of my faith.

A good story to drive that thought home is in the book of Joshua in the Old Testament.

Joshua was the leader of the Israelite tribes after the death of Moses. God promised Moses that He would take the Israelites to the Promised Land, and when Moses died, Joshua was the person who took over, conquering Canaan, and then distributing its lands to the 12 tribes.

In Joshua 12, Joshua brought together all the tribes of Israel, the elders, the leaders, and the judges. He retold the story of the Hebrew Israelite people and how God took Abraham and made his descendants God’s people. He told them how God gave Abraham Isaac, how He gave Isaac Jacob and Esau, and how Jacob and his family went into Egypt.

He then told the story about how God sent Moses and Aaron to lead the Hebrew Israelites out of Egypt.

After finishing their story, Joshua said to them:

“Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

In my house and life, we say, “Ball is life.” But we know this is just a saying. In reality, our faith is life. In John 14:6, Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.”

"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your might."

— Deuteronomy 6:4-5

It is great having hopes, goals, and dreams in life, but don’t put them in front of God, Jesus, and your faith. We win some, and we lose some, but God is forever.

We make shots, and we miss shots, but Jesus is always there and always loves us, no matter what.

Ball can be life, but make sure ball is not more life than God, nor is it in front of God.


1 - What is your third bucket? Family, work, and _____.

2 - What can you do this week to make sure that you put God in the front of the list?

3 - What is something that distracts you and can get in the way of keeping God first in your life?

4 - Who is someone that can help with this? What is a Bible verse that can help? What can you do or say this week to help you keep God first in everything you do?

Before I get out of bed, and before I go to sleep at night, I will do two things:

1 - I will read Matthew 6:33: But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.

2 - Every morning before I get out of bed, and every night before I go to sleep, I will pray: "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your might."

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