Daily Newsings: 17th May

Daily Newsings are musings on the daily news.

Indian football’s greatest player of recent times has just announced his retirement. Sunil Chhetri scored 94 goals for India in 150 international matches over a period spanning nearly 19 years, and on 6th June this year he will sing his swan song.

Sunil Chhetri was truly a great. Only Christiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi among active players have more international goals than Chhetri, and they have played 205 and 180 matches each respectively. This is not to suggest he was anywhere near them in terms of quality (the quality of teams they played was vastly superior). But it does tell you how prolific of a striker Chhetri was.

What was the secret behind his long and successful career?


If there was one thing that Chhetri epitomised, it was discipline. Till the end of his career, Chhetri was known to be among the top in fitness tests. He was extremely diligent when it came to his training — always giving it his all even in training. He was also very disciplined with his diet and sleep routines. I remember hearing interviews where Chhetri said he wouldn’t stay up to watch matches because he needed sleep.

The wisdom literature of the Bible is a treasure. It tells us about the moral law of the world. And living by the principles of the moral law, we can live a good life (to some extent), although there are many exceptions. For analogy, take the physical law of friction. If you used wheels to move a heavy object, it would be easier to move it than to drag it without wheels. Similarly, life would be easier and more fruitful when we work with the moral law of the world than against it. This moral law is what the book of Proverbs calls wisdom.

The wisdom in Proverbs talks a lot about the value of working hard and being diligent at it — both directly in praise of hard work (Proverbs 10:5, 12:24, 14:23, etc.) and indirectly by speaking against laziness (Proverbs 21:25-26, 19:24, 20:4, etc.).

We do live in a world broken by sin, and so we often see hard-working diligent people not get the fruits of their labours — there are many disciplined and diligent sportsmen and sportswomen whose careers are ruined due to injury or the corruption of the sporting bodies.

But when we look at the life of an inspiring man like Sunil Chhetri, we can praise God. We can praise for the common grace He showers on the world — on people like Sunil Chhetri. We can praise God for his example and model to so many young aspiring footballers in the country — to be disciplined, be diligent. To follow the voice of wisdom as book of Proverbs puts it.

I’m sad today that Sunil Chhetri won’t be scoring many more goals for India. But I’m thankful. And I pray for more such footballers to come up.

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One response to “Daily Newsings: 17th May”

  1. Abhilash avatar

    Very insightful, Caleb.

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