It was the first practice of the season when our team of nine boys, each with a different background, level of athletic skill, and stage of faith, first came together. By season’s end, the boys knew they had become a part of a team that had developed a climate of trust, joy, and acceptance.
Every single one of them had improved their skills on the court, but they also grew in Christ as we talked about our weekly verses and how they touch our lives and hearts. Applying the skills learned in practices and games made such a difference in who these young men became, and more importantly, who they will grow to be in the future. By embracing the scriptures we read and seeing how they applied them at home, school, and on the court, it impacted me, and my faith grew along with them.
At the end of the season, one of my players, a first grader, told me he'd never really seen anyone pray and that I taught him how to do it through modeling it weekly. He said he looked forward to his conversations with God - What a discovery! Upward Sports made a difference in all of us.