A SportsLeader coach held his father/son jersey night last week. His opening words are below.
God bless, Lou
Here on our team our mission is “resolve”or convictions. The crux of manhood, and the deficiency in our youth is just that. I don’t feel that our kids, in this society, are put into situations where a “personal stand” has to be made. Or where a boy has to call himself out, face his fears, find his courage, and witness a success that he otherwise would not have had to do. Generally speaking, our kids don’t have their PHD’s, and I don’t mean doctorates. They’re not poor, hungry, and determined because of being poor and hungry.
Life today isn’t as provoking as it was when I was a kid. I played and fought in the streets daily, from sun up to down.
I couldn’t press the clear button, or “restart” in my games on the street. I won or I lost. And everyone knew it. It was my name, my family name vs. his and his family. And when I won. I reported it back to my father, and when I lost, well if my brother was mad at me for some reason, he would tell my father. My mother was the worst. She couldn’t stand a loser, a pouter, a whiner. If I lost, I better be bleeding.
Losing just wasn’t acceptable to us in those games. I thought ,” Don’t waste time trying to figure out how to accept losing”, “when I needed that time to figure out how to win”. “There is only so much time”, and I needed to care of my time and space.
Everybody gets a participation medal today, everyone gets a medal, so who won? Who lost? Who needs to look inside of himself and find something new? Who’s jubilant about how much incredible potential he has just found because of his incredible hard work? Let winners be winners, they will work to keep the ecstasy. Let losers be losers, it will help define them, make them hungry, make them great. The truth is the truth.
Anyone can enter a race! Fear of losing is the best motivation for winning! Isn’t fear of hell a great motivator to not sin?
So I believe it is in “resolve” that we find our manhood. What do you stand up for? Is there a mission that you would fight for? Die for? Is there anything in your life that you just won’t tolerate? Is there something in your life that you need to take action in right now?
We have asked our players, Have you reflected on the almost incomprehensible concept of eternity? Do you know that there is a reason that humans have the ability to understand eternity?
It’s because your creator wants you to. He wants you to know that you have the gift of eternal life with a joy that you could not withstand nor even have a whiff of here on earth, or the tragic eternal death, with pain and suffering that no human has witnessed on earth. And because he created us to know, love and serve him, He wants you to go to him, so we can win this battle. But we need to gain the most important skill of all, “resolve”. Without resolve we are men without armour, we will take the arrows and they will penetrate our skin, and weaken us. Resolve is our armour and our weapon.
“I will.” Not “I can”, or ‘I’ll try”, but “I will”. That’s’ the type of incredible strength and focus that it takes to go to heaven. Whatever it takes, no excuses, no explanations, and God is the only one who can give you that kind of strength. So we need to be humble enough to go to Him, therefore there is humility in strength, the more humble we are, the more we clear the way for strength. His strength.
This is what our football program is about. We pray for humility. It sweeps the floor, it moves the furniture out of the way. It puts God in our lives.
We mentor your sons eye to eye in these virtues. They resolve to specific actions. They are called out to them. Our Coaches resolve to make them men of specific actions. Men of “change”, action, growth. So that they can see that they have the ability to succeed and achieve. This will lead to men of a mission, a mission that walks in the shadow of resolve.
When boys see that they can become men of action, they can change their culture instead of being victims of one, that through the strength of God, they can “achieve” by flexing their very own will, the muscle of their own souls, that’s when we really start to live. And then when you put a helmet on that very same young men, you find that this game called football sheds light upon and exposes his character. Football exposes resolve, it doesn’t build character, character builds football. Resolve builds character.
Football is a game that sheds light on the truth. How resolute can a young man be? Football will show him. How tough, physically and mentally can a young man be? How much can a young man find about himself, who he is, where is he going, how will he get there? Football will show that to him.
So tonight we celebrate our manhood and our cherished families, our ability to resolve and to find strength amongst ourselves with each other to continue to grow with the men of our lives.
Our beloved sons, the father, the leader of our children and wives, the future fathers, the protectors and providers of and for our children and women., and the sages, the grandfathers, the coaches and all the sacrificial mentors of our youth.
We take this moment now to allow senior dads to speak openly about their sons and symbolically hand their jerseys to them as they hand the keys to manhood.