Last night the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers to win Super Bowl 50. Here are some facts about the teams and the game that you might not know:
• Peyton Manning became the oldest quarterback ever to win a Super Bowl.
• He is also the first quarterback to win the game with two different teams.
• For the first time, two quarterbacks who were number-one picks in the NFL draft competed against each other in a Super Bowl.
• The age gap between Manning (39) and Carolina quarterback Cam Newton (26) was the largest in Super Bowl history.
• John Elway, Denver’s general manager, became the first to win a championship as a player and as a GM.
• Over the last fifteen championship games, the favorites won only three times.
• A thirty-second Super Bowl ad cost at least $5 million.
• Around 170 million people worldwide watched the game from 180 different countries.
• People eat more food on Super Bowl Sunday than any other day of the year except for Thanksgiving. Around 4,000 tons of guacamole were consumed yesterday, with the assistance of 13,500 tons of chips. Around 90 million pounds of chicken wings were eaten yesterday as well.
I admire the way Peyton Manning prepared for the game and handled victory afterwards. In the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, he consistently deferred attention from himself and focused on his team. After last night’s win, he refused to answer questions about his possible retirement, lest his story overshadow his team’s victory.
Max DePree, a former CEO and bestselling author, defines leadership this way: “The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between the two, the leader must become a servant and a debtor.”
Oswald Sanders, in his now-classic Spiritual Leadership, claims that “true greatness, true leadership, is found in giving yourself in service to others, not in coaxing or inducing others to serve you.” To discover if you’re truly a servant, see how you respond the next time someone treats you like one.
In our consumer-centric, self-promotional culture, selfless humility makes a lasting impression. Jesus “came not to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28). Now he invites us to follow his example. The world will not always remember who won Super Bowl 50, but the next person you serve will not forget your sacrificial compassion.
Nor will your Lord.