Football is legendarily the “game of inches.” But so is life. We do not win all at once. We win inches at a time. There is no such thing as a one quarter victory. We play for 60 minutes, just as we live for all the years God has appointed for us. Every down is an opportunity – no punt is a loss. Every day is an opportunity – no setback is the end of hope.
Just as we always have hope in our team, we must always have hope that tomorrow will be a better day. We can always achieve what is good, and our coach (The Lord) will never let us down.
Football is legendarily a heavy contact sport – but so is life. We all get hit, we all have to take the hits; yet, if we have the virtue of hope, then we know that the hits and tackles, that which happens to us is all part of the process of living. Life is not a game. But we can learn how to learn better from a game. So, let us learn this:
It is said that offense wins games but defense wins championships. Life requires both. We must, in our lives, be our own most zealous advocates and defend against those who would bring us down. We must never fear to bring the fight to our opponents, and to push as hard as we can for that which is important – those whom we love, that which we value, all that is good and right and just.
As we complete another…in fact the 126th season of doing this and doing it well… let us reflect on what we have learned and what we continue to learn:
God is good.
Life is not easy.
God wants us to be happy – in fact, God wants us to be happy forever.
We can neither predict nor understand God’s ways.
Yet, we trust in God and in God’s ways.
God likes football because it teaches us about life.
God likes Notre Dame football most because His Mother told him to.
Football is a metaphor for life.
Living is legendarily a game of inches. We win one inch, one love, one child, one person helped, at a time. We play football in the same manner that we seek to live. To win, win, win, win, and win. But above all, never to give up. We don’t play football for fun; we play football to learn. We don’t live for fun; we live such that our lives might help others. At Notre Dame, our Lady’s university, we play and learn and live and help. And we will never give up.