I’m planning for knee surgery on Nov. 7, which has me on IR and ultimately means my season is over. It’s an unfortunate circumstance that came from a fluke play in a game a few weeks ago. Yes, it’s disappointing and I wish this weren’t the case, but I’m trusting where the Lord has me. So I’ll get the surgery and get back on the road to recovery soon.
This is the first time in my career I’ve experienced an injury like this. I’ve been playing tackle football since I was 7 years old and have only missed one game (two or three years ago) because of health reasons. After 23 years of playing, I finally find myself on IR.
With the best record in the NFL, our team is doing incredibly well right now. My plan and my team’s plan would be for me to play every game alongside my teammates. My role on special teams can really help us with field position, especially as we get into the later part of the season and then ultimately the playoffs. But obviously that’s not God’s plan for me right now.
These circumstances have definitely not been easy for me. My heart is heavy as I wrestle with this every day. At times I’ve thought, “God, are you kidding me right now? I’ve been doing really well; my team is doing really well. If our team is doing better, it’s only a greater platform to share about You!” All of these things seem like great reasoning for my will. I like to think I know the best way, but He’s showing me that I just have to trust Him and know that He has the best way. He’s calling me to be faithful in the situation He’s placed me in during this time.
My prayer for my life has always been, “Lord, whether You give me a lot or a little, help me to be faithful with what You entrust to me.” As humans, we often only see success as receiving the big things or accomplishing a certain goal we’ve set for ourselves, but God sees success as being faithful with wherever it is He places us. So my prayer continues, “God, how can I be useful right now? How can I be faithful? How can I be used to the maximum capacity You have for me in this season?” Wherever the Lord has me, I know I can trust Him. With this assurance, I can have joy no matter what circumstances I find myself in.
Though I can’t compete or train at this point, I try to stay involved with the team as best as I can, navigating around my rehab schedule. I’ve been at the facility doing rehab, popping into meetings at practice and at the hotels, and on the sideline with the team for the games. If I can’t physically give my body to my teammates right now, then I can give them my mind and my heart.
“For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that One died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.” — 2 Corinthians 5:14-15
We’re not living for ourselves, but for the One who died for us. We need to put our own self aside in order to do His will. Our purpose here is to glorify Him and make His name known — whatever it takes.
— Chris Maragos
Chris Maragos is a special teams ace and safety with the Philadelphia Eagles and a regular contributor of The Increase, providing monthly articles and opinions.