BEEF-y Christians

Psalm 75:1 “We proclaim how great you are and tell of the wonderful things you have done.”

One of my students recently gave his demonstration speech on how to make a successful free-throw shot in basketball. He should know. He holds the high school record for successful free-throw shots in the state of Maine. To explain how he does it, he used the acronym BEEF to explain his strategy.

Most people familiar with the game have probably heard of BEEF: B—maintaining balance; E—eyes focused on the target; E—elbows aligned in 90-degree angle; F—follow through. If players hope to swish the ball through the net, they need to master these steps.

I couldn’t help but think how the acronym of BEEF might apply in our Christian walk. Maintaining the balance of being in the world but not of it. Keeping our eyes focused on Jesus. Aligning our elbows at a 90-degree angle as we hold the Word of God. Well, that might be a stretch, but the last step is not a stretch—the follow through.

Follow through for the Christian consists in praise. Scripture abounds with directives to praise the Lord in response to what we see him do. “I will recount the gracious deeds of the Lord, the praiseworthy acts of the Lord, because of all that the Lord has done for us” (Isaiah 63:7). “He is the one you praise; he is your God, who performed for you those great and awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes” (Deut.10:21). “Sing to him, sing praises to him; speak of all his wonders …” (1 Chron 16:9).  When we see what the Lord has done, we should be praising him for it.

If we hope to strengthen our relationship with the Lord, we must not ignore the follow through. Praise brings completion. It helps us remember what a trustworthy God we serve. I suggest we engage in a little “binge praising” from time to time. Be intentional about praising God for everything we think of, and then some, because praise tends to increase our ability to see him and his works.

Do you want to be a BEEF-y Christian? My student didn’t become the best free-throw shooter in Maine without practice. Let’s practice those areas that make us strong as believers. And especially, let’s not neglect the follow through.

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