I Blog For Books

17 March 2009

Wear Your Hat

I will start this with a statement that many of you know already. I am an Alabama fan (ROLL TIDE!). No offense at all intended to those of you who do not think that crimson is a beautiful color as it applies to football, including my three 'Auburn' children. Thanks to Rob, I also am a huge Texas Longhorns fan. (Big 12, SEC = No conflict of interest). Should Alabama and Texas play one another, however, my football allegiance will have to be with my Crimson Tide. Many Southerners dearly love this time of year, because fall equals one of the things near and dear to their heart: FOOTBALL! I am not saying that football is a southern thing, it just seems that we are more enthusiastic about it than most. (written 17 Nov 2008)

What does this have to do with hats? Name one thing that comes to mind when you think of Alabama football. Yeah, that's it. The houndstooth plaid hat synonymous with legendary head coach Paul "Bear" Bryant. There are arguments about whether the pattern is houndstooth or just plain plaid (all houndstooth is plaid, but all plaid is not houndstooth). Call the pattern whatever you like, it is the spirit of the hat that reverberates through the Alabama fan to the rhythm of the school's fight song. Why did "Bear" wear the hat?

The story has it that it was a gift sent to him by the owner of the New York Jets to thank him for encouraging Joe Namath to sign with the then upstart American Football League's (AFL) New York Jets instead of the established National Football League's (NFL) St. Louis Cardinals. Rookie of the year in 1965, Namath led the Jets to a victory in 1969 over the heavily favored Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. (Yes, that's three). As quarterback at Alabama, Joe Namath (under the direction of Coach Bryant) led the Crimson Tide to successive National Championships in 1964 and 1965.

Still not following my convoluted train of thought? Alabama fans wear houndstooth fedoras to show their allegiance to their team as well as a symbol of their respect for UA's beloved Bear. If you are a football (or any sport, for that matter) fan, you probably have at least one thing in your possession that signifies your loyalty to your team. What signifies your loyalty to Jesus?

I don't think it's the Bible you read and/or carry, nor the clothes you wear to church on Sunday. It's not the bracelet/pendant/hat you wear asking the question "WWJD?", nor is it the cross or crucifix hanging around your rearview mirror. My opinion? It is the person that you are, not the possessions you have. While we all have responsibilities, bosses to please, families to satisfy ... our ultimate judge is God. When the day comes that you stand before Him, what will He say? Wear your hat for Christ ... stand proud and unashamed.

Jesus, I thank you for the ability of expression. Help me to use it every day so that I glorify you.

"I know, my God, that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity. All these things have I given willingly and with honest intent. And now I have seen with joy how willingly your people who are here have given to you. O LORD, God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac and Israel, keep this desire in the hearts of your people forever, and keep their hearts loyal to you."~1 Chronicles 29:17-18NIV

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