2018-06-07 / Sports

FOLLOWING SPORTS RELIGIOUSLY

By Mike Wilson
Sports Reporter • mwilson@mihomepaper.com


Mike Wilson Mike Wilson The other day as I was heading home, I noticed a practice going on at the Little League field and I pulled over and decided to watch for a bit. I’m guessing the players were 7 or 8 years old. I watched as the coach worked with the boys; he was teaching them the basic fundamentals of the game. The correct stance for an infielder (feet apart, knees bent, glove in front and low to the ground), making throws to the bases (step and throw, getting your feet under you, knowing which to throw to), batting stance (elbow up, step toward the pitcher, watching the ball all the way in), these were the fundamental things that the coach was working on with his players, and taking time to work with the individual who needed a little more instruction. It was fun to watch.

After teaching some of the basics, the coach had them begin working and practicing those fundamentals over and over. I started thinking about these kids moving through the different levels and for those reaching high school varsity level, how many times they will practice these fundamentals and how, at some point, with enough practice it becomes second nature to them and they perform the basics without even thinking about it.

You know, faith is just like this, we need to learn the basics and gain an understanding of those fundamentals. For some, the basics are learned in their homes when they are young (who God is, who Jesus is, how to pray, how to read the Bible) and others learn them at Sunday school, summer camp or at vacation Bible school. Others learn later in life, the good news is that it is never too late to learn the basics of faith.

After we learn the basics then comes the time of practicing your faith, reading your Bible, praying on a regular basis, attending church and sharing your faith with others.

The more you practice these basics the more and more they become a part of you, you no longer have to ask W.W.J.D. (what would Jesus do?) because you would already know. I recently had the privilege of chatting with a gentleman at a church I was visiting. He was 92-years-old and he had been attending that church for over 50 years. As we talked, it became very apparent that his faith and love of God was very much part of who he was. Even though he was in a wheelchair, his fingers were twisted from arthritis and he was using portable oxygen, his smile was broad and the joy just flowed out of him.

When you watch varsity sports, you can always tell which players have learned the fundamentals, practiced, practiced, practiced, and can play without having to stop and think about it. When someone is watching you at the office, classroom, place of business, or even just at Wal-Mart, will they be able to tell you have practiced your faith and will they see it is a part of who you are?

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