Relying On God For Strength, Health, And Confidence

Football proves to be an excellent proving ground for learning to rely on God for strength.

By J.C, age 14, MO

Categories: Abundance, Health, Safety

With sports, I've had healings in areas that many people face everyday -- the lack of strength, the fear of injury, and the thought of not being good enough.

Wow! I was finally in high school. Everything was looking great … except for one minor (well, not-so-minor) detail: I was expected to play football, and I had barely ever played before. I felt dead after the first day of practice -- all of the yelling, pushups, running, and up-downs one can fit into two hours! But I knew I couldn't quit. I had had tough experiences before, which had just made me stronger. I decided to rely on God for strength. I had finally made it to my first game, and it was really exciting. I had been praying that everything would go well and I would have the ability to do what I needed to do. We were playing a really good school, and I was on the offensive line against a very big person. I did not think that I would be able to do what I needed to. But I kept relying on a sense of God-given strength to pull me through. After a while, I started enjoying the game. I was able to hold the line, which at the time, I thought was impossible. If I had thought that it was me who had blocked the defender, I would have lost, but since I relied on God, I was able to fulfill my requirements. Awhile later, a teacher of mine shared the interesting story of Gideon from the book of Judges (ch. 7) from the Bible. This related perfectly to me as Gideon relied on God. God showed him and the Israelites that it was not by their own power (because God had Gideon choose only 300 soldiers to fight against the mass of the enemy) that they defeated the Midianites, but by God's power. When we see that God is the one who supplies strength, we will get that strength.

I also had to deal with the fear of being injured while playing football, as there were injuries all around me. Although I wanted and tried to see all these people in their God-given perfection, I was still wondering if I would be next. One day at a practice right before a game, my finger got injured. I thought that I would be okay in a few days, and so I waited. When my finger was not healing, I turned to prayer. I was reminded of the passage, "The lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in who I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower" (Psalm 18:2). This gave me something to hold on to in my time of need. I eventually was healed of this ailment and am still very grateful.

We have all had times when we were not good enough … well I have, anyway. We are doing the best we can, and other people still discredit us. I had one such experience, which was very upsetting. I had worked for a long time hoping to make the soccer team. When I did not make it, I was very disappointed and felt let down. My parents told me about a Bible passage that made me realize that God is in control: "For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee" (Isa. 41:13). Although I did not have another opportunity to play soccer, I found a love for football the next season. Seeing that God is the one who shows us the way to go and guides us on the right path has given me a sense that He is always loving and caring for me. Whenever I feel alone or forgotten, I lean on this, and it comforts me.

There are many challenges that we all face in our daily lives, but they all can be overcome when we trust in God. Whether it be on the sports' fields, in the classroom, or with friends, we can see the truth that God is apparent in our lives. When we see past what is put in front of us, we see the reality of the Almighty God.