The Denver Broncos headed into the locker room in San Diego trailing 24 points. Rivers was making magic happen and the Broncos couldn’t even capitalize on the good plays. Remembering back to this nightmare¬– Decker was wide open, the end zone in sight, Manning sees him deep and throws, we all hold our breath, the throw was…. GOOD, Decker catches it and it’s all end zone, or not. Decker trips short of the goal line. No problem, it’s first down and we’ve got all the time to get our 7 points. Or not. Manning intercepts the ball, the Chargers catch it and run it ALL the way back to score a touchdown. A 14-point swing on a sure thing. This was the story of the first half.
Game over? Many thought so. I texted furiously during the first half with my fellow fans. The texting died to nothing in the second half. What happened? Where did my fellow Bronco fans go? To bed. Who could overcome 24 points? And with the way we were playing– not a chance.
Why did I continue to watch? Two reasons. First, any Denver Bronco fan should know by now that it is never over until it’s over. We make miracles happen. Second, I had just heard The Master Coach, Stephen McGhee, talk about the difference in seeing is believing and believing is seeing.
In seeing is believing, we wait for the evidence. When we have the proof, and can see it with our own eyes, then we will believe. There is just one problem with this. How will we ever get the evidence if we need to see it before we believe it? This is how so many Denver Bronco fans reacted after a brutal first half. They didn’t believe a turnaround was possible. It had been done only a few times in NFL history and Manning had never come back from a 24 point deficit. The evidence was not in, and many didn’t believe.
However, Peyton Manning started the second half not willing to give up. He wasn’t going to give the Chargers the second half lying down. He was going to do anything and everything to win this game. This was the first piece necessary to create a Miracle– a burning desire. Simply put, he wanted it bad enough.
Manning told the other guys on the field, “Chip away.” He didn’t intend to turn the game around in one play. He was going to do it one play at a time, the second step to creating a Miracle. As Manning believed he could do this, something started to shift. The rest of the Denver Broncos, too, believed before they saw how it would be possible. A fire was ignited, and in short order, a flame was burning.
One play at a time, Manning and the Denver Broncos narrowed in on the 24 points and leapt ahead making the final score 35-24. What about Manning’s earlier interception and Decker’s trip so close to the end zone? It didn’t matter. The past was not dictating the future and Manning and the rest of the Denver Broncos were not going to let the performance in the first half, write the script for the second. Every play was a clean slate. They came out to start the second half not at negative 24, but at zero– starting from nothing.
What are people saying today? “Manning was just being Manning.” This man believed, never gave up, wanted it more than anything, and lead his team to the greatest comeback Monday Night Football has ever seen.
What is everyone else saying? The ones who went to bed? “Wow! I didn’t believe it. I didn’t think they could do it.” Now that the evidence is in, will they believe it next time? Maybe. But that’s not really the point. Where else in your life have you gone to bed early? When have you said, “I don’t believe it. It’s just not possible?” When have you let your past performance dictate your future results?
Napoleon Hill said, “We foolishly believe that our own limitations are the proper measure of limitations.” What have you believed are your limitations? What if you believed before seeing? What kind of Monday Night Magic is there within you, just waiting for you to step on the field for a fresh new half?