SportsLeader is a virtue-based mentoring and motivation program for coaches. This blog shares stories from coaches all over the country transforming lives. For more information contact Lou Judd -

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

So You want to be a Christian AND a Navy SEAL? Get ready for troubles and injustice!

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”  John 16: 33

"One time during INDOC while we were out on a night run, one of the instructors actually climbed up the outside of a building, came through an open window, and trashed a guy’s room, threw everything everywhere, emptied detergent over his bed gear. He went back out the way he’d come in, waited for us to return, and then tapped the guy’s door and demanded a room inspection. The guy couldn’t work out whether to be furious or heartbroken, but he spent most of the night cleaning up and still had to be in the showers at 0430 with the rest of us.

I asked our drill sergeant, Reno, about this, weeks later and he said, “Marcus, the body can take near anything. It’s the mind that needs training. The question that guy was being asked involved mental strength. Can you handle such injustice? Can you cope with that kind of unfairness, that much of a setback? And still come back with your jaw set, still determined, swearing to God you will never quit? That’ what we’re looking for.” Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell (excerpt on the two week boot camp Navy SEALS must complete before official training starts.)

I was a victim of injustice today. Another coach gave one of my athletes a hard time for being a wrestler, really messed with his mind(although I really don’t think the coach realized how much of an impact he had on the kid, do any of us really understand our impact?) I was pissed, felt betrayed, felt terrible for the kid, and was ready to give that guy a piece of mind. Sound familiar?? How many times have you been a victim of injustice? You get fired or don’t get the job. You lose your position to another guy. The coach is playing favorites! You get a bad grade or evaluation. You are overlooked on a daily basis. You don’t get the credit for making the play or making the right call. According to Christ and the little excerpt on the Navy Seals, welcome to life as a Christian, a Navy Seal….in short a man.

We have been warned that our lives on earth will be filled with troubles, trials, injustice, unfairness, rejection, misunderstanding, etc… Why does it surprise us when it happens? I want everything to go according to plan, everything organized, on time, in the right place. But the devil loves messing with our plans, loves messing with our minds.

I’ve decided today, that I need to get ready for my plans to go amiss. I have to plan for injustices and troubles. I have to prepare for mishaps to occur because these are signals that I’m not incompetent, but that I’m doing exactly what God wants me to do….my mission from God is being attacked. What an honor! What is more, I need to prepare my wrestlers for this reality as well. My guys, will be persecuted for being brutal on the mat, will be persecuted for “being gay” wearing tights and rolling around on a mat with another guy, will be persecuted for dieting and not eating whatever they want, whenever they want it (like so many Americans these days), persecuted for giving their time and devotion to a minor sport, persecuted for doing the right thing in the classroom and in the community, persecuted for helping others when it’s not cool for teens to think of others. I told my wrestler this today and I think he understands better. What was best, I told him I loved him and cared about him whether he wrestled or not. I know after today, that he came one more step closer to being a man. And it would have never happened if my mission hadn’t been attacked today.

Isn’t that like Christ, to take an injustice and turn it around so it becomes a blessing? I witnessed the power of God today, what an honor! I hope you have the grace to suffer through injustices as well, try to control your anger, ask God for guidance and then hold on for the ride, of Christ making it all good. Believe and have faith!

Coach Willertz
Winton Woods Wrestling: Fighting the Good Fight!

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