We just spent a week in Oregon where we got to take in one granddaughter’s volleyball match, a grandson’s soccer match and baseball game, another granddaughter’s soccer match and two of our son’s high school volleyball team’s matches. One of those matches was near Salem, Oregon at “Crosshill Christian School.” If you’ve driven past Salem on I-5, you have probably seen the huge white cross on a hill near the freeway. That is the location of the campus of Crosshill (previously known as “Willamette Valley Christian School”). We traveled with Grant’s North Clackamas Christian School volleyball team on a school bus (about an hour drive) to the match—quite an experience with a bus load of high school girls and the boys’ soccer team that came along to be the cheerleaders! Several adults traveled with us as well. Crosshilll has a very good team and won in three sets, but NCCS came close in an exciting third set.
After stopping for supper after the match, we were waiting for everyone to board the bus when one of Grant’s players came up and sat by him to discuss her role on the team. Though just a sophomore, she is one of the better, more consistent players on the team. The conversation was pretty amazing and had to be very encouraging for our son. She said that she is not satisfied with how she is playing and wants to do everything she can to improve and help the team succeed. She wondered what she could do to become a better player and asked Grant to push her to improve. Wow! What coach wouldn’t love to hear that from his players!
I couldn’t help but wonder how often God hears that from any of His “team”? Have you ever said to God, “I want to serve you more effectively. What can I do to grow in my faith? I want You to push me to become a more faithful, effective servant.” Just as any coach would love to hear one of his players ask to be pushed to improve, I’m sure God loves to hear from any of His children that they want to become all that He wants them to be and are willing to “be pushed” in whatever way it takes.
I remember reading about a Christian football coach who told God that he was available to be used in whatever way He wished. Even though he was having a positive influence on his high school football team, he just wanted God to know that he was willing for God to do whatever it took in his life for him to be most effective for Him. It wasn’t long after that that the coach was in an accident which left him paralyzed from the neck down. As he was recovering in a large hospital where there were a number of others who were also dealing with physical problems similar to his, a pastor came in to share with them, and to try to encourage them. After he left, he could hear some of the others whispering, “What’s he know!” They knew that the pastor really couldn’t identify with their trauma and fears and physical needs. Then God spoke to the football coach saying, “But you know, don’t you.” One by one he helped lead each of the others to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. God had answered his prayer, though not quite in the way he had probably expected.
Are you willing to say to your “Coach” (Jesus Christ), “I want to improve as a player and be more effective in helping my ‘team.’ I want You to push me. I want You to use me in whatever way You wish to advance Your kingdom. Jesus, I want You to mold me and make me according to Your purpose for my life.” Paul admonished the believers at Rome with these words: “I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect” (Ro. 12:1,2). That’s God’s desire for us too. If we are going to be effective as His ambassadors ( II Cor. 5:20), we need to be “FAT” Christians (Faithful, Available, and Teachable).
Maybe you need to have a chat with your “Coach” today.