This spring held a new adventure in my lacrosse coaching career as I started working with our seventh and eighth-grade boys lacrosse team. As I began to refamiliarize myself with the group, I realized that the boys had changed in noticeable ways since the last time I had worked with them. A few years ago, they were younger, easier to manage, and rarely challenged my opinions.
One thing that I grew to appreciate during our season was my time spent addressing them as a team. Watching their various levels of attentiveness became entertaining. Certain kids would hang onto every word that I would say and were ready to hit the floor running! Others would provide a blank stare in an effort to convince me that they were listening, but I knew they really weren’t. Then there were usually two or three that would goof around, thinking that I couldn’t see them when I actually could. As I continued to share the same messages with the entire group, there was a great discrepancy in how my words were received.
“Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what they think they have will be taken from them.” Luke 8:18 (NIV)
Jesus made this challenging statement in the Gospel of Luke right after teaching parables to his audience. As we read the Bible, it is important for us to consider how we listen! God can reveal new things to us through the same passages of Scripture if we just choose to listen carefully. When drawing close to the Lord each day, remember to ready your heart and pay close attention to his teachings. If God’s word is not as alive in your heart as you want, I would challenge you to take a moment and consider how you listen and respond to Him.
Although the boys on our lacrosse team were a few years older than the last time I had coached them, they were not necessarily better at listening. Over the course of time, we need to stop, reflect and consider how carefully we are listening.
Since 1954, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes has been challenging coaches and athletes on the professional, college, high school, junior high and youth levels to use the powerful medium of athletics to impact the world for Jesus Christ. FCA focuses on serving local communities by equipping, empowering and encouraging people to make a difference for Christ – to see the world impacted for Jesus Christ through the influence of coaches and athletes.
More information can be found at FCA.org.