PlAYING IN FREEDOM
I’ll always remember the sense of peace and freedom I had before the tip off of the national championship game.
As I sat in the locker room, I reflected on what had happened over the past 24 hours.
When we were called in to a meeting after beating Davenport, I expected to be rallied by our coaches through revenge stories, having lost to Saint Francis three times during the year. Rather than talk about basketball, we spent the entire time in worship and prayer. Specifically, we read about how the apostles prayed in Acts 4 and tried to copy their pattern. We gave praise to God and all that he had done. We prayed for our opponents and that, through any means, His will be done. We prayed that the room would be shaken, because we knew that when God enters a room, He moves and things change. In Acts 4, the apostles prayed and spoke God’s word with such boldness that the room was shaken, and all who heard were filled with the Holy Spirit. We wanted to have this type of courage to share what God had done in the hearts of the men on our team.
To add to this spiritual experience, we invited our fathers to join us for breakfast and a pregame scout on the morning of the championship. This was the first time that I got to pray with my father and father-in-law. It was amazing to come together in prayer with these role-models of mine.
These acts gave me a sense of calmness that I hadn’t felt for weeks. I felt confident as the game became secondary in my mind. I knew that God was alive and working in our team, and this made the game seem of small importance. These experiences gave me a peace I hadn’t felt during the tournament. They gave me a sense of freedom. I knew that I had everything I needed, and that God was with me.
I wasn’t sure if we would win or lose, but I was sure it didn’t really matter.