- Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life - Into the Middle of it

'Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life' with Tom Kelley
Originally posted on 10/12/2017

Into the Middle of it

Many, many years ago I used to play football. Almost sounds like a fairy tale doesn't it? But I did. I was a wide receiver for a football team. This was back in the halcyon days of the Green Bay Packers, Baltimore Colts and Cleveland Browns; before those teams were considered perennial runners-up or fallers by the wayside. We're talking your basic late 60's.

As a wide receiver, I was to run my routes with a certain measure of precision. The quarterback wanted to throw to a particular spot on the field and he expected me to be there when the route called for it. A ten yard out was a ten yard out; not an eight yard or a twelve yard out. And a five yard slant was also just that...and very dangerous to run. Slants put a wide receiver into the middle of the field where large people usually hang out.

About the third game of the season I was called upon to run a slant on the first play from scrimmage for us. I set up in my usual location just outside the tight end and back about three yards. When the quaterback hit the signal I bolted two steps forward and then hurled my body as fast as I could run toward the middle of the field. The ball and the middle linebacker arrived almost simultaneously. My teammates said the collision was fierce, but when the dust settled I was still holding the pass. I didn't drop the ball.

Later in the game I was talking about I was called upon to run another slant route. I did so and caught another pass and got hit hard again. But I kept running the route whenever I was called on to do so. Every now and then God calls for us to enter the danger zone. From time to time we are faced with issues that are not easily resolved. They may put us on a collision course with something out of our comfort zone as a person and we may suffer for it.

"Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoise to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy." 1 Peter 4:12, 13 So when God calls for you to run the slant route right into the big boys, do it. Just concentrate on the need and hold onto God.

Meet the Author:
Tom Kelley, pastor, speaker, lived with his wife, Becky, in Georgetown, Kentucky

...He was the Minister of the Minorsville Christian Church located near Stamping Ground, KY.

...Becky and Tom have three children; John, single and in worship ministry in Nicholasville, Kentucky; Sean, married (Jennifer, elementary school teacher) with twins (Grace and Patrick, b.d. 10/31/04) and regional director of Papa John's Pizza in Central KY; Kara, married (Vince Taylor, prison guard) and working with Hospice East in Winchester, KY.

...Tom went to be with the Lord on November 13, 2009 after a lengthy battle with cancer.  If you have been touched by Tom's writings please send an email to Tom's son at

'Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life' Copyright 2018 © Tom Kelley. 'Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life' articles may be reproduced in whole under the following provisions: 1) A proper credit must be given to the author at the end of each story, along with their complete bio and a link to  2) 'Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life' content may not be arranged or "mirrored" as a competitive online service.
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