Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Soccer Season

If I had any idea what I was doing, I would put a nice picture of my soccer team here. Since I have no clue, I’ll just ramble a little. I coached a YMCA team of 6, 7 and 8 year olds. We rocked – we only lost one game! I have little coaching ability or know-how for most sports, but soccer seems a little more logical – just go that way and get the ball in that area! If by some chance the other team has skills and abilities, just mess them up! That was our game plan. It worked. It was fun. My two-fold purpose for coaching soccer was as follows:

1) Time with my daughter. She wanted to play, and I volunteered to coach her team if the Y would accept me (my background check apparently was o.k. since they never said no!). She’s not an aggressive “soccer stud,” but she had fun. More on her in a moment. But the second “hidden agenda” reason I coached was…

2) I need to interact with others better, and getting to know 11 or so other families (moms, dads, grandparents & kids) was gold. I am hoping that some of those relationships can continue and that, who knows, I might engage in “conversations that matter” along the way with some of those folks. I’ll keep you posted.

Perhaps the coolest moment of the season was when one of our little guys went down after a collision. Without skipping a beat, as the play continued on as it does in soccer, my daughter stopped what she was doing and rushed to the aid of her fallen player. Her concern for her teammate was greater than her interest in the game.

Amazing what you can learn in the most unlikely places from somewhat unlikely people. But that cold Saturday morning I learned that sometimes, the “game” doesn’t matter. Who in my life is hurting and needs attention? Who have I blown past on my pursuit of some sort of goal, and failed to stop and reach out a helping hand?

Would I have been excited if my daughter had scored a goal during the season? You bet. But what churns my heart more is the notion that she’s getting it. Through all of my pitfalls of ineffective parenting, etc., somewhere she is picking up the heart of Christ. I want more than anything to see that heart for people continue to develop. Who knows, maybe it will rub off!

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