Calling an Audible

This year’s football season has provided something unexpected. Without fans in most stadiums, there has been the ability to hear more clearly what the quarterback says as he waits to receive the ball during pre-snap. People watching have experienced all the things that he yells, especially the words, “Kill, Kill.”

For those who do not watch football, let me explain that he is not yelling out orders to exterminate a player from the other team. Although, if that were an option, I am sure most quarterbacks have some player they would like to eliminate. No, this is a shout to kill the play that was given in the huddle. The quarterback sees the defense and no longer wants to use the play that was initially called. He wants the team to know his decision, so he yells to his left and then to his right, notifying everyone on the field.

This process of play selection and changing is referred to as calling an audible. The quarterback’s voice changes the play to a second pre-selected play or shouts out another option before the play clock runs out.

Every week as I watch football, I am reminded of two essential truths. First, sometimes you are not able to do the thing you want. The defense is set. Your opponent knows your tendencies and has a plan to trip you up. Second, do not be afraid to change the play at the last second. The most successful teams have quarterbacks who can read the defense well and make changes with only seconds to play.

All this is true not only in football but also in the Christian life. The devil knows enough to make your best-laid plans fail. Sometimes you have to change your plans and follow how God is leading you. It takes a keen mind in tune with God’s word and his will, along with years of practice, to know when to make a change, but it is a skill that can be developed.

I believe God surrounds us with divine opportunities and appointments if we keep our eyes open to his leading. Maybe what you had planned today, this week, or weekend will need to hear, “kill, kill,” so that God can send you a different direction to do his work. Flexibility can be the key to obedience.

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