Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Swallowing The Pride Pill

The Upward Soccer season is drawing to a close.  Last night was the final practice and all we have left is one more Saturday of games and an end of year awards night the following day.  This year had its frustrations and I even found myself questioning whether or not I should continue coaching due to some overwhelming frustrations.  Though I love the game and I love all the kids I almost felt like they'd be better off in someone else's hands since I cannot seem to get the results we're shooting for.

I say that and its certainly true of the boys team.  They've lost all but one game and tied the one in question.  But the girls have a winning record having only lost to one team.  But we've lost to that one team three times and we have no business losing to them considering our talent level verses theirs.  I really don't mind losing especially if and when we are outmatched.  Many of the boys games we were dramatically outmatched and so I cheered every time we'd even remotely get a fast break or make a great play.  Other times and just about every time with the girls, we lost the game mentally and let less talented teams have their way with us.

This league focuses on sportsmanship, learning the game, and learning about Jesus Christ instead of a win-at-all-costs mentality that many other leagues seem to promote.  But I have a confession.  I like winning and this has been a very tough season for me especially on the boys side of things.  I've never had such a record as this and humility abounds.  Yet last nights practice was the one where I got to share the Gospel.  We covered John 3:16, recapped all the principals that we'd been teaching throughout the season, and ended with sharing The Good News about Jesus Christ.  We talked about why Jesus had to sacrifice Himself for us and what that actually means to us in the here and now, as well as eternity future.

Nothing could be more fulfilling or a better reminder to me than getting such an opportunity.  I will take ten years or horrible records so long as each season ends with teaching kids about a relationship with Christ.  God basically made me swallow my pride pill, pressed the reset button, and opened my eyes to what this is really all about.  I love these kids and my role as coach is much deeper than teaching sports techniques!