I admit it–I am a football fan. Specifically, I am a Cheesehead and proud of it. I was shocked when my Packers didn’t make it to the Superbowl, and not being a Giants fan (and certainly not a Patriots fan) I almost decided not to bother watching the game. But I decided to watch the game so that I could see the commercials.
The commercials were actually better this year than in most years in recent memory, and the Doritos commercials were the best. Especially the one with the dog. It is a sad day when dogs are better at acting than most of the humans, but I digress. The game itself was not too bad, either. Giants, the underdogs, pulled off another upset and I was happy to see that. I pull for the underdogs most of the time, unless they are playing Green Bay.
The half-time show, however, is my topic for discussion. I have never been a fan of Madonna. Her messages are not exactly motivational or inspiring. Really. “Strike a pose”…”Material Girl”…I never had to dissuade my daughters from her music. Thankfully.
I guess I take her message as the anti-message to my faith. Her message is not about accepting the responsibility of something so much larger than yourself and being pure in the face of great sacrifice. She entered the stadium as if she were a god to be worshiped. While she seemed tame in comparison to some of her other performances, she still conveyed that same message of self-ness being the most important–self-deity, in a sense.
If you think about the woman for whom Madonna is named, Mary the mother of Jesus, you cannot help but see the contradictions. Mary was a pure and innocent woman awaiting the coming of the Messiah as the ransom for Israel. Can you even imagine having an angel appear to you and tell you that the Holy Spirit of God was going to indwell you and that you would give birth to your own Savior? I still cannot fully grasp that, and believe me, I have been working on that most of my almost 52 years. Mary gave up her simple life for one of scorn and sorrow, knowing that her Son would one day die so that He could bring life to His people and to the rest of the world (most of whom would reject Him). The Bible says she is blessed…and because she obeyed and submitted to the will of God, we have been blessed by her obedience also.
My mother’s name is Madonna, but she more closely resembles the REAL Madonna. Her life has been characterized by selflessness and reverence for the Lord Jesus. When she battled breast cancer six years ago, she looked at each chemo treatment as an opportunity to share the love of Jesus with those who were treating her or sitting next to her while they, too, received their chemo treatments. The night before her mastectomy, she was shopping with my dad for a bathrobe to take to the hospital. The young woman at the cash register thought maybe my parents were going on a trip. When she learned what my mother was going to be doing the next day, the young woman was so saddened by the news. My mother, as only she could do, used the opportunity to share the gospel of salvation with that young woman and it set the tone for the rest of my mother’s recovery. The cancer was her open door to share GOOD NEWS of SALVATION…no pity party, just ways to share the love of God in very real ways with total strangers who were as yet without hope.
I will probably write about my mother (and my father) again–I have some great stories and memories that will be fun to share, but for today, I am thankful that my godly mother Madonna is who comes to mind when someone mentions the name…Madonna.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
And she smiles at the future.
26 She opens her mouth in wisdom,
And the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and bless her;
Her husband also, and he praises her, saying:
29 “Many daughters have done nobly,
But you excel them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.
31 Give her the product of her hands,
And let her works praise her in the gates.