My boys play A LOT of sports. They play organized sports (swimming, baseball, basketball, and flag football); they play sports at recess every single day (mostly hockey, knock-out basketball, capture the flag and soccer); they play sports at home (basketball, baseball, two-hand-touch football, ping pong, knee hockey, and occasionally lacrosse). They play tennis, volleyball, foursquare and miniature golf on our summer vacation. It’s a huge, huge part of their lives, and I couldn’t be happier about that. Because for me it’s not just a game: sports provide a window to the soul.
I’ve only missed a handful (one handful) of games or swim meets because of conflicts. In part I just like being there. It’s entertaining, and obviously little boys want their parents there to cheer them on. But I am also intrigued as their mother, as a shepherd of these little souls, how sports magnify and intensify issues of character. Swimming competitively requires determination. Baseball requires concentration. Basketball requires hustle. My son, Will, has an incredible work ethic, and losing is hard for him. Really hard. Can I tell you how important it is then that he loses? Besides confessing Jesus as his Lord and Savior, that son of mine becoming a gracious loser, an all-around good sport, is one of the most important things in the world to me.
And even though we haven’t yet seen Jeremy Lin lose, is there any doubt that he’ll be gracious? I’m so thankful that even though many professional athletes offer little to emulate besides hard work, there are some who profess their faith and live it. I am loving the boys waking up each day to new levels of Lin-sanity!
This morning I am praying Hebrews 10:22-24 for this winsome young man, this Harvard graduate and unlikely star. May Lin hold unswervingly to the hope he professes. For He who promised is faithful. Surely, Lin is spurring MANY on toward love and good deeds!