Never Give Up

This past college football season, the Georgia Bulldogs and the Alabama Crimson Tide faced off in the college football national championship game. It was a great game with Georgia coming out on top, knocking off Alabama for college football crown. The winner and loser of this game is really of no importance in the big picture, but there is one story from the game that I believe can be a great lesson and encouragement for each and every one of us. That is the story of perseverance from Georgia quarterback, Stetson Bennett.

Stetson Bennett’s drive, determination, and perseverance is certainly something worth thinking about. When Stetson Bennet was just three years old, he told his dad he would be the starting quarterback for his favorite school, the Georgia Bulldogs. After his high school career, he received multiple scholarship offers from some smaller mid-major schools, but not one from a bigger program and most importantly, no offer from Georgia. So, Bennett decided he would go to Georgia as a walk on in 2017. Meaning he was a part of the team, but he wasn’t there on a scholarship. Bennett stayed at Georgia for a year, but buried in the depth chart and seeing no playing time, he transferred to a Jones County Junior College for 2018. There for a year gave him the exposure he needed as he was then offered a scholarship back at the school he loved, the Georgia Bulldogs. He began the 2021 season as a backup to five-star quarterback JT Daniels. But Daniels was hurt in the second game with UAB. Bennett took over. It has been his job ever since. Here’s something else of which Bennett is aware. He understands that despite a record of 13-3 as a starter at Georgia, some fans don’t believe you can win a national championship with a former walk-on as quarterback. After the loss to Alabama in the SEC championship game, some fans blamed Bennett despite the fact that he threw for 340 yards. And there is this nagging fact that can’t be ignored: In Bennett’s last two games against Alabama, he has thrown five interceptions. He is one victory away from proving all of those critics wrong. He did just that Monday when he led his Georgia Bulldogs to a national championship. So many times, Stetson Bennett could have quit, gave up on his dreams, and even blamed others through the years. He didn’t do that. He stayed the course, kept working, persevered, and was rewarded being named the offensive MVP for the championship game.

The lesson for us is seen in the journey of Stetson Bennet- NEVER GIVE UP! No matter what Satan or anyone else throws at us, we do not quit, give up on our hope, or blame others for struggles. We push on to the goal, the upward call of God for that imperishable crown. I pray we can all be like Paul who in II Timothy 4.7-8 said, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.”

Hebrews 12.1-2 says, Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Is something hindering you in the race? Lay it aside. Is some sin clinging closely to you? Cut it off. Is Satan telling you to quit running, relax, take a break? Ignore him, run with endurance. I’m begging you, do not let anything matter to you more than finishing the race of faith. Never Give Up!