One person's thoughts may change the world
“If it’s in God’s Plan”, the guy said to me while on the elliptical machine at the gym. This was said in a conversation while talking about sport, specifically football. He is a trainer, and belongs to a network of trainers that are associated with IMG down in Florida. “Interesting”, I said to myself. So, I then to ask myself, if it’s really in God’s plan, then what is the need of IMG?”
Sports is, to the most part, been bastardized. You know, adulterated, contaminated, weakened, diluted.. you get the picture. But before I jump in all of that, I’m going to connect the dots to the statement of, “If it’s in God’s plan”.
Whenever someone mention’s “God’s Plan”, I always refer back to Jesus. Jesus simplified a convoluted way into heaven. First you had to be Jewish, second you were under the rule of law and not grace, and third, It wasn’t working. Man was so perverted that God even destroyed the earth with a flood to rid the earth of such petulance. God had to simplify and dummy it down for us, through his son Jesus. With him came grace and inclusion of all ( well actually no, that wasn’t till Paul but anyway…). Once again, for those of you who don’t quite understand my train of thought on this, God does not care who wins a football game. God does care for your well being, and that you are safe, but, God, is not a fan of the New England Patriots. When Tom Brady was drafted in the 6th round, it was not in God’s plan to help him win 4 super bowls. So what was it then?
When the trainer talked about “God’s Plan”, he was talking about getting a scholarship to play football. The recruiting process is an ugly business. Rivals, has a fictitious rating system that tells a player ( and the world ) whether he is a 2 star or a 5 star ball player,and Rivals is now going to start rating junior high ball players, to which I believe is the start of the end of growing up and just playing ball for the fun of it. By the way, when I said, “What is the need of IMG?”, the question being raised is really, this, “If you have enough money, you can build an athlete”. IMG cost money. Lots of money. 2099.00 for a week in March. They even have a high school now, teaching academics, and getting you the best training possible for particular sports, including football. Do you want to send your kid there? Try 68,000.00 for the 2014-2015 school year if you’re a boarding student. If you can afford that without eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, then perhaps it is in “God’s Plan”, for you…
But wait a minute, did I say that would end all the fun? That stopped a long time ago. Parents as well as kids are now targeting specific sports, and train their kids relentlessly for it. The strange thing is, if parents would devote the same amount of time to academics, we’d all be raising geniuses. But, we are not. Sports is now used as a tool for greater income, and living past glory instead of character building, team work, motivation, hard work, dedication, and life lessons. Even those lessons have little to do with God. Instead, they are a product of studying the work of God through his son, Jesus. When God told Moses, “Speak to the rock to bring forth water”. Moses disobeyed God and struck the rock, twice by the way. It was a lesson of God using faith as something that transcends what you know, and what you have faith in. That was a tough one though. Moses was struck down as a prince in Egypt, walked the desert, found a Bedouin community and raised a family, talked to God through the burning bush, went back to Egypt, asked Pharaoh to release the Israelites, Through the power of God, he cast plagues on Egypt until they were released, parted the sea, destroyed Pharaoh’s army, took the Israelites to mount Sinai, received the commandments, crushed a rebellion who was worshiping a golden calf, made them drink the water ground with the golden calf etc.. Whew, that a lot of freakin’ stuff to be flagged for a display of a little bravado and frustration about a rock and not allowed to go to the promise land. Dang!
So parents train their kids, take them to special training, get tutors, put them into all sorts of camps, travel baseball/basketball/soccer/7-7 camps, contact coaches, all for the sake of getting them ready for the next level. But the question is, next level of what. We only hear about the success stories, how the athlete overcame traumatic experience in his/her life in order to achieve ‘”their”, dream. but each year, only 300 spots are available to pro football, and their are 66,000 applicants. WOW.
So with all of those odds, I see why the trainer could think there has to be some divine intervention to make it. That is to make it in the sports. The combination of right parents, siblings, weight lifting, team sports, individual training, education, athleticism, etc. is only one part of the equation.
So Tom Brady was in a special situation. Drafted low, sat for a year, then put into action when Drew Bledsoe went down. It was a combination of the right owner, coach, team, combination of players, draft status, the moon, the stars, when Tom Brady was conceived, and a whole lot of stuff that I have no insight to. Now if God had his hand in all of this, why only Bradshaw, Montana, and Brady are in such lofty company? Why not Michael Vick? By the way, Ben Roethlisberger was accused of accosting a women on two separate occasions ( settled out of court), yet he’s won two Super Bowls. Michael Vick was convicted of funding a dog fighting team and was practically emasculated. Was that God’s plan as well? Hmmmmm…
So, I guess I’m saying you have a choice. Faith plus action equals courage. Can God be in that equation for you? If you believe it, then yes. But the meaningful word is action. Without putting your faith in to action you will lack the courage to achieve anything. So go out there, despite all the obstacles that may lie in front of you. YOU can do it, if you apply action with faith. Action is: working out, eating the right foods, staying focus, believing in yourself, studying, using all of your tools in math, science, literature. But just remember, you’re a roll of the dice. You had no say of what womb you came out of, but you have the ability to build and grow yourself into anything your work hard for. So whatever you do, build your plan, pray on it, then… Work your plan. Work as hard as you can.
So, the statement of “If it is in God’s plan”, should be concatenated with, “But just in case it isn’t”….. But I guess what I really mean is this: Most of today’s children walk around with an entitlement attitude, rich or poor, it doesn’t matter. Very few, who I have coached, walk around with a chip on there shoulder, grumpy, kinda pissed off with the cards they were dealt with and taking out that frustration on the field. They immediately conceded to the bigger, stronger, faster kid, without even testing their own limits, and their possibilities. What they don’t realize is, very few have the total package, or have the total package and know how to use it. When I played football, I enjoyed being the underdog, being underestimated, having a laid back disposition off the field and being a holy terror on the football field.
Tom Brady was a 6 round draft choice, and to this day he lets everyone know it, every freakin’ chance he gets…..
Hmmmm, I wonder what’s God’s plan for cheerleading…