No. This is not a Ouija Board, or anything cultic. We're not even going to sing Kumbaya. We're going to play board games and we're going to love it. No more hangovers, no more heartache, no more strange stains on the shirt. Only 'fellowship' and 'friendship' formed in a tight circle of game players. Yes. That's right. We've gathered here to play Settlers of Catan. We're gathered here for 'Game Night.'
What is it about Christians and their game nights? Sometimes we don't even play Settlers. Sometimes we play Apples to Apples, Monopoly, Game of Things, or even Werewolves, which is more commonly known as Mafia. There's nothing better than playing a game named after criminals who bootleg and push people on the subway tracks. But on a more serious note, aren't cards of the devil? No grandma, they're not. And besides, we're not playing poker. We're playing 'how to build long lasting relationships with our Christian friends.' That's right folks. We're having fun.
More specifically, what is it about Settlers of Catan that has such appeal? Maybe it appeals to us because we can gather wheat in obedience to Matthew 9:37-38. Jesus did say, "The harvest is plenty but the workers are few," but I know it wasn't in reference to a 4-6 player game people all over the world would play thousands of years later. Or maybe it has to do with ore or brick, or more appropriately it has to do with Psalm 118:22-23, "the stone which the builders rejected." Or perhaps we just want to be like King Solomon and use our timber to build a temple for the Lord like in 1 Kings 5:6. But I think it has more to do with sheep with John 10:27, "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me." We want to honestly follow Jesus in even the fun things we do together.
Besides, Christians gather around and play board games together because we... like each other. And perhaps, maybe some of us are reaching out to those in need who aren't as comfortable doing their thing with groups or people in general. Part of being in the body of Christ is being in a family. We're brothers and sisters and believe it or not families that play together tend to grow together. Sure, we're not always talking about Christ's atonement for our sins, but perhaps we're living a little more like the kingdom than we imagine. God loves people. And when we do anything that reflects that, we're reflecting an image of God that honors and glorifies Him. That's pretty cool.
So gather up your board games, put out popcorn and chips, bake those brownies, and go to the byways and highways to invite the poor and needy in (Luke 14:15-23). People are tired of the bars and petri-dish clubs. Their looking for hope and something as simple as a non-judgmental night filled with board games and laughter will remind them of that. And besides, how else am I going to win at Settlers unless I invite new people who I can school?
Photo by: Gadl