Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Rejoice in the success attained by your team – It’s important that they perceive that you’re genuinely interested in them. It’s important that they see that losses hurt and wins feel great! Celebrate victories with them. Give the players and coaches lots of “attaboys” or “attagirls” when they have achieved well. Recognize the value that they have for the sport, better yet, hold that same value in your heart.
Arrange for visits to your home – This is a great opportunity to model for your players and coaches the values and principles that rule your life. In your home, they’re on your turf and your rules apply. You can model hospitality and familial love. Having players or coaches to your home for a meal is a dynamic form of ministry that is not soon forgotten.
Thursday, July 19, 2007
- Provide opportunities for competitors and coaches to pray for each other – There are several simple ways for doing this.
Prepare small sheets of paper for each one to write a couple of prayer requests, then gather all the papers and redistribute them to those present for prayer through this week.
During a chapel or similar meeting, solicit prayer requests from those present and then ask for a team member to pray for each of the requests mentioned as you all pray together.
- Team Meal prayers – Many teams travel en masse’ and eat their meals in one large group. If the Head Coach values a prayer prior to meals, this may be an opportunity for you to pray for the meal and briefly for other matters of preparation for the competition. Keep it brief and to the point. They came here to eat, not to hear you pray.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
· Individual Prayer with Coaches or Players – At various times, there may be opportunities to pray with individual coaches or players who find prayer to be helpful to their preparation for competition. Do your best to determine what is desired from this prayer time and focus there. Be sure to pray in direct relation to the coach or athlete’s role in this competition. Pray about issues like teamwork, leadership, communication, performance, honorable competition and personal discipline. Both Dietmar Ness and Andrew Wingfield Digby mentioned that contacting players who are injured or are otherwise struggling in their sport is a wise and effective strategy for ministry.
· Write a note or letter to inform someone of your prayers – A simple, hand-written note that assures a coach or an athlete of your prayers and even mentioning what you’re asking God for on his/her behalf is of infinite value.
Thursday, July 5, 2007
Oswald Chambers said in is devotional, My Utmost for His Highest, “Prayer is not preparation for the work of God; it is the work of God.” I have found no other spiritual discipline to be of greater value in ministry with people than prayer. Even the most secularized person, with whom I may be speaking, if I ask him/her if we can pray together, will agree. Prayer can be a most powerful tool for both your ministry of solitude and intercession for the players and coaches and for direct ministry with them as you are together.
· Pray for favor with the leaders of your sport. The coaching staff and the other leaders in your sport will determine in large part the access you will have with the rest of the coaches and the competitors of their team. If they see you favorably, you’re in. If they don’t, you have a much more difficult assignment. I often pray for favor with such leaders and trust the Lord to provide it. (See Proverbs 21:1.)
· Prayer through the Team Roster or Batting Order - Acquire a team roster and pray for your team. That roster could come from a game program or a team media guide. However you get it, take full advantage of it and pray for each team member by name. Take note of other information like hometown and family background that is often in a media guide.
o You can pray through the roster or the batting order on game day in intercession for each of the competitors and the coaching staff.
o You can pray for those on the team when you visit practice sessions. This is a great opportunity to work on memorizing uniform numbers and names as well as praying for them.