June 18, 2018

By Paul Banta

Matthew 28:19-20 says, “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – NLT

Matthew 28:19-20 says, “Jesus, undeterred, went right ahead and gave His charge (God authorized and commanded me to commission you) to go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age.” – The Message

As we coach this game of soccer, we all have a mission, and we’re to do it well. When we become a part of God’s Mission Team, our gifts are given to us by God and no one else even if you feel you worked hard to get where you are today (Proverbs 3:5-6). We are here to help others join God’s Mission Team, and disciple/mentor/lead them, with our time, talent and treasure commitment.  When you bring into your team players, you’ve recruited, you spend time with them and engage them in training, conversation and getting them on board with what you feel is the best for them as part of your team. Why is it that we often struggle with a biblical approach of leading and mentoring others like Jesus commanded us too and directed by the same example as we read throughout the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and the writing of the Apostle Paul?

We read about very life of Christ and how He went after the twelve disciples, then the 72 and in larger groups, shows us how we minister. It was a process, and it did not happen overnight (it took Jesus three years of steady hard efforts).  We must imitate Him to become part of our life daily living patterns practice over and over to we score those precious goals (souls). It’s just like you want for your players in their match performances. Since God loves everyone, there is no one in the entire world He doesn’t want to be on His Team.  One day we’ll be in Heaven with Him, so we disciple as part of His command for us. This is His way biblically, and we have to learn to do it right through what He tells us in the Bible.

What a great promise found in today’s scripture? When Jesus tells the Church (Christian coaches) to go to “all nations,” He isn’t talking about countries; He’s talking about groups of people anywhere on this earth. He tells us to go to every people gather and make disciples using His model. He lived on the planet to get the job done. There’s 100’s of nations and 1,000’s of people groups. This is a huge task facing us in the game of soccer, but if all of us in this great game did our share correctly, this would change the Kingdom of God population on this earth and one day in Heaven.

So, what’s stopping you from doing this part of God’s commandment for in the game you love and are so passionate about?  What the problems out there? Is it that you don’t care enough or don’t get it?  Are you too busy with the continually putting yourself out there trying to solve others problems and not dealing with our own? Do you overextend beyond what your job requirements are? Does life in general on this old earth requires that your schedule to be so full that the devil does not have to hang around you because of you red carding yourself right off the playing field that has been prepared for you by your Father?  We could be slowly killing ourselves rather than to accomplish in Christ what we’re commanded to do.  Imagine yourself controlling your players in training sessions, and they won’t do it?  You’d feel angry; want to fight back, because what you have to offer will provide success for them and one day produces significant players. The Father and His Son feel the same way about us when we don’t follow His commands.

Indeed, it’s a huge task. God’s mission is not just local for you, but it’s also regional, national and global. But it’s not mission impossible; its mission that must be inevitable and all of us in the game must make that small dent which is what Jesus planned for us. The Great Commission will be fulfilled if we become disciplining men and women doing it with the right approach and with the right passion and purpose.

So, what’s your next move?