September 24, 2018

By Paul J. Banta

Ephesians 2:7-10 says, Now God has us where He wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all His idea, and all His work. All we do is trust Him enough to let Him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work He does, the good work He has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.” – The Message

For coaches in this game of soccer, the above scripture can’t be any more evident than to nose on our faces. God gave us a position in this game (that He created by the way) to come alongside Him and do a great job in the work He has planned and the work He expects us to accomplish.  If you love the game and are passionate about it, we can honestly say we’ve got one of most meaningful jobs in the world coaching the game.  I speak to many coaches around the world, and not one of them has ever told me they hate the game.  On the contrary, they love it.  If God has us where He wants us, and we’re doing the job His design for us, He’ll encourage us by giving us an abundance of His grace, mercy, love, and kindness through His Son Jesus.  Because of His provisions, we need to pass this on to our players as we serve God through our passion for soccer.

God calls us to a service far beyond anything we could ever imagine, but we have to start believing and listening to what He wants us to do.  You were selected for this game to contribute and a difference for His Kingdom on earth so you must become pro-active.  Imagine coming out to your training sessions and just standing around thinking well will just let God take over your training session and maybe we’ll win Saturday’s match.  The truth is that He needs your time and talents to move your players to where they can perform with success.  You need the Lord in the same way so you can complete for Him reaching a level of success you would have never experienced without Christ influencing you.  Ephesians 4:1 says, “For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight and He did this in love.”

God designed us to make a difference in and with our lives.  You were created to add to life on Earth, not just take from it.  God wants us to give something back beyond the game to our players and not be a consumer coach by taking and never give or return the thanks.  Ephesians 2:10 says, “In our union with Christ Jesus He has created us for a life of good deeds, which He has already prepared for us to do.”  We’ve got a great future doing this game for Him.  He’s got it written and scribed out before us, but we have to visualize it and do it. These good deeds are our service to others on this earth created by Him with all we have.

Ephesians 6:7-8 says, “Serve wholeheartedly as if you were serving the Lord, not people because you know that the Lord will reward each one for whatever good they do, whether they are slave or free.” God has always intended to use you in this game for His goals, for His Glory and for what He designed for you all along.  God has a more excellent ministry for you in this game than you could ever imagine with His mission and design for you in the world. He leaves us here to fulfill His purposes until we see Him one day and hear those words, “Well done my faithful servant. You did the game exactly how I had planned for you.”  Let’s get on with the game for Christ.

What’s your next move?