A client of mine shared the video below with me. She knows I am a big sports fan as well as someone who loves the Lord.
I enjoyed the video. I also enjoy watching sports, mostly on TV. For the better part of my adult life I’ve worked in the field of sports, either as a coach or broadcaster. I am believe sports has much to teach us about ourselves, both good and bad.
I also believe the benefits of participating in sports, whether as a player or coach, are far superior to simply watching sports. But isn’t that true of anything? What’s better, watching a preacher talk about loving your neighbor or actually going out and loving your neighbor?
Let me ask another question: what is more impactful – sitting in a pew and listening to someone talk about the Word of God or going to the practice field Monday through Friday and experiencing the Kingdom here and now? Would you rather your child sit half awake on Sunday morning and hear about the Fruits of the Spirit or really learn about them through interaction with his peers?
Love – you need to love the game, your teammates, the hard work, and the journey to succeed.
Joy – if you can be joyful even after a tough defeat, you are clearly learning true joy.
Peace – can you be at peace and look the other way when your competitor is talking trash?
Patience – it takes years to master a sport. Those without patience give up.
Kindness/Goodness/Gentleness – a good coach will instill in his players the desire be kind and humble after a game, win or lose. He will teach them to put the good of the team ahead of their own desires. He will gently but firmly help them overcome their failures.
Faithfulness – successful athletes faithfully carry out the game plan of their coach, trusting his wisdom.
Self control – this is a major requirement for athletic success. Self control is learned when an athlete rises early in the morning to train, skips the dessert tray to stay fit, does not respond to the taunts of a competitor, does what ever the coach tells him to do, etc.
Of course without the right guidance and attitude, sports can teach you all the wrong things too. Pride, arrogance, idolatry, cheating, etc.
There is no question many take following their team way too seriously. Imagine the difference in our world, in our communities, in our homes, if we all took reading the Word as seriously as reading the box score.
I’d love to hear your take on the video. Mr. Platt is very well spoken and has done an good job of engaging & exposing what must be a difficult topic for many to hear.