The same is true for those of us in the church.
Like the Vikings, The United Methodist Church is having some tough times and our "Super Bowl" record is about as dismal in the last fifty years or so. I can understand if loyal fans of the church would rather be booing instead of cheering. I am not sure however that the booing is anymore helpful to the church than it is to the Vikings. Maybe it is because I am an optimist, but I think the cheering helps a lot more than the negative stuff. Just as Ponder knows he screwed up when he throws an INT, most of us in the church know when we are making mistakes ... we need to be picked up, not picked on.
What does cheering look like in the church?
Obviously our work is not done in stadium bowls with vast roofs to amplify the noise, where the resounding shouts can both pump us up and make things hard for the other team. Our work is a constant ongoing effort, week in and week out, Sundays and every other day and all of us need some cheering at times to pick us up. We need to spend some time celebrating the good things that are happening and looking forward with hope, not beating each other up for things we don't agree on or don't like, or things we think could have been done better. There is a time to focus on the mistakes, both for football teams and for the church, but too often we let our negativity and criticism spill over into times were we need to be upbeat, positive, and really believe that God is at work, maybe not helping the Vikings, but certainly helping the church to do great things no matter what the "score" might be.