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Good losers never give up

By Ron Kopczick

It’s not easy following a perennial loser. Perhaps I should have known better when I made the St. Louis Cardinals my favorite pro football team in 1966. But I was only 7 years old. And the Cardinals had some decent teams in the ’60s.

However, that ’66 season may have been a precursor of the years to come. Competing for the NFL’s Eastern Conference title, the Cardinals began their campaign 7-1-1. Then quarterback Charley Johnson was injured and lost for the year. St. Louis dropped four of its last five games and finished in fourth place.

Since then I’ve been able to count on one hand how often the Cardinals have made the playoffs: four. That’s right; four times in 38 years. And I can count on one finger the number of postseason games they’ve won during that time. (I think you can figure that total out on your own.)

I’ve never given up though. When the team moved to Phoenix in 1988 my allegiance followed. Problem is, the Cardinals have had less success than in St. Louis, experiencing only one winning season in Arizona. And the 2004 season began in familiar fashion with the Cardinals losing five of their first seven games.

No matter. Despite the annual disappointment and ridicule I endure from fans of more successful franchises, the Cardinals are still “my” team. I don’t ever plan on abandoning them. (Unlike my cousin who told me in the 1980s he would remain a Cardinals fan for only as long as Neil Lomax was their quarterback.)

But as strong as my loyalty to the Cardinals may be, it definitely pales in comparison to God’s eternal and unfathomable support for His children.

Even if you think you’re a two-legged version of the Arizona Cardinals, suffering more setbacks in life than victories, God’s not looking to bail on you like some bandwagon-hopping relative. He will always be your biggest fan when you give Him your best as a part of “His” team.

Ron Kopczick is promotions coordinator of Today’s Pentecostal Evangel.

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