It’s time for me to come clean (again): I’m unreasonably excited about football season this year.  I can’t wait for my Longhorns to be relevant for the first time in a decade.  I’m intensely curious about how well Bijan Robinson (a Longhorn) is going to play for the Falcons in his rookie season. I’m always ready for my Cowboys to return to their rightful place at the top of the football pyramid!

I love the intensity of football games – especially at the end of a close game, when a team is behind and facing a make-or-break 4th down.  I love it when both teams just ‘gotta have it’ and it all comes down to which team executes most effectively.  It’s always so interesting to see what play a coach will call when they ‘gotta have it’ and how a player will respond when they ‘gotta have it.’  You learn so much about a coach’s personality and a player’s capacity!  More than anything, you see what matters most and what coach and player alike believe in the most.

This is exactly the reveal we see at the end of Paul’s letter to Titus.  Paul tells us exactly what ‘play’ he’s going to call when the heat reaches its boiling point, when the community is most under pressure, when he’s ‘gotta have it.’  For Paul, when he’s ‘gotta have it,’ he exhorts his community to just do ‘whatever is good.’  Seven different times in the last two chapters of Titus, Paul encourages followers of Jesus to ‘teach whatever is good,’ set an example by ‘doing what is good,’  be ‘eager to do what is good,’ be ‘ready to do what is good,’ and ‘devote themselves to doing what is good.’  In his closing lines to Titus, he urges Titus with a sense of desperation: “our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order that they may provide for daily necessities and not live unproductive lives.”  When Paul’s ‘gotta have it,’ he turns his communities toward doing whatever is good, because that is what they were made for!

When we find ourselves desperate, confused, frustrated or even angry, Paul is going to tell us over and over: do whatever is good. This way of living and following Jesus will never fail to lead us into God’s will.  It won’t keep us out of harm’s way nor will it make our lives magically easier, but it will put us alongside Christ.  If I’m behind, and it’s fourth down and a mile to go, alongside Christ is exactly where I want to be.  Do whatever is good!