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Warcry: The greatest victory

Lucimar da Silva Ferreira, defender and five-time Champion of theBrazilian national football team in 2002, says he prizes his relationship with Jesus more than anything else.Lucimar da Silva Ferreira, defender and five-time Champion of theBrazilian national football team in 2002, says he prizes his relationship with Jesus more than anything else.

We Brazilians are very emotional people. So you can imagine what it was like in July 2002,when our ‘seleção’* won the World Cup title for the fifth time! 

Right there on the pitch my team mates fell over each other in a transport of joy and couldn’t believe their luck: at that precise moment we were in the eyes of the whole world the best footballers on the planet. What an incredible feeling!

But even before the whistle blew to start the final against Germany, I knew for myself that I had to express my gratitude to God somehow. Whenever I experience something really great in my life I think almost automatically in my heart of hearts of God. Since I’ve got to know him I am absolutely sure that there are no coincidences and that he means well with me.

My ‘Jesus loves you’ T-shirt was my way of letting the world know that my gratitude was all to him; but I also wanted to express that other people can experience the same wonderful things with God that I have.

Since my personal relationship with God began I realised more and more which values are really important in life.

A lot of football fans often think that we professional players are happy, because we earn a lot of money and can buy what we like. But that is a great mistake! The things that can really make you happy can’t be bought for all the money in the world.

Now I’m talking here most of all about the feeling and the knowledge of being ‘at home’ with God and not having to run around searching for the meaning of life. For several years God has been a real father to me, just as we pray in the Lord’s Prayer.

Jesus, whose resurrection we celebrate at Easter, is my best friend and constant companion. He is always faithfully at my side—whether in the Champions League final against Real Madrid, where we lost, or in the victory fever of the World Cup final. He will still be with me when my name is long forgotten.

I am so grateful to God for so many talents and gifts and that I can play in such a great team with so many really gifted players. But my own personal way to happiness and contentment came only through doing what the Bible says, ‘Give yourself to the Lord; trust in him and he will help you’, (Psalm 37 verse 5).

Jesus is that Lord and you can go that way with him too. If you trust Jesus, you have the chance of gathering in the greatest victory possible in life: God loves you. 

(Source: The Salvation Army German Territory, 2006 World Cup Special Edition)

*national team 

Other stories from Warcry

To read other stories from past issues of WarCry, click here.