By Glenn Martin
The influence of coaches and athletes in our society is profound, as demonstrated by Twins Faith Night at Target Field on Aug. 29.
“Ephesians 4:4 is at work,” my wife Barb told me. “There is one body and one Spirit here tonight.”
Then you turn around, and holy cow!
There were 4,500 people who stayed until 11 p.m. to hear the players’ testimonies. Not everyone there was a believer. But you hope that those people who weren’t are seekers and were really touched by the night.
What was really cool were the different types of stories from the players. Blaine Boyer, Eduardo Escobar and Torii Hunter were not from Christian homes. Brian Dozier and Kyle Gibson were.
It wasn’t a straight line for any of them.
But they touched a lot of different walks with this message: You don’t have to be a certain kind of person, have to have a meaningful faith experience.
Of course, we don’t know what the Spirit did with the invitation that went out. How many hundreds of kids may have been impacted?
In FCA, we present to coaches and athletes the challenge in the adventure of receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. While this is incredibly important for them as individuals, their influence on the lives of others is profound because of the tall platform on which they stand, casting a long shadow of influence. Simply put, when coaches and athletes speak, people listen.
We help coaches and athletes come to Christ and equip and encourage them to live out their faith in Him.
This is truly kingdom work.
Because of their profound influence, it is critical that FCA continues to impact the lives of coaches and athletes. If anyone doubts whether it's important to invest in coaches and athletes, they only need to look at what transpired at Faith Night.
But you don't have to be a professional athlete to inspire. Athletes in middle schools, high schools, and colleges and universities can similarly impact and influence others.
We just trust that God will use us for his purposes. But this isn’t enough.
It reminds me of the powerful ending scene in Schindler’s List, which you can watch below.
As good as we’re doing, there are more lives that need to be reached. And the clock is ticking for each kid who is going through high school and college.
Can we get to them before those years are over?
Coaches have a coaching life span.
Can we get there before their life is over?
What can we do with the time that we’ve got, to reach more kids and more coaches?
We’ll continue to lean on a powerful verse:
After Faith Night, I am more convinced than ever that we must intensify our efforts to reach all coaches and all athletes in Minnesota with the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ so that they can, in turn, influence, challenge and encourage their teams, families and communities to come to faith in Christ and serve him as the Lord of their lives.
Jesus is the only hope that people have as individuals and the only real hope for our society in the world today.
So come join us as we are seeking to touch more lives.