Planting Seeds of the Gospel

April 15, 2019

The blog post below is written by Kristetta Miller, Upward Soccer League Director at Kingsville Baptist Church in Pineville, Louisiana.

 


At the end of each soccer season, as players and parents come for our end of season celebration, I usually take a moment to admire the crowd. I see our players and 2-3 guests per child that have heard the gospel during the season and are about to hear it one more time before we part ways. It is an amazing sight.

Our church has had an Upward Soccer League for 14 years. I have been the league director since we began. From the beginning, for me, it was about using my organizational skills to allow others to do their athletic thing. I thought the best use of my time was to stay behind the scenes and let the coaches love on the kids and teach soccer skills. What I did not realize was my tasks were not confined by my director duties. I am responsible for loving my neighbors. It took me a few seasons to remember to slow down and get to know the coaches, players, and parents.

It takes all kinds of skills from all of our volunteers to make our program run as smooth as it does. However, we cannot stop with great organization. We must get to know our community and see it as the privilege that it is that they have come to us. When working with people, you must learn quickly that they have so much more going on in their lives than what you think or what is obvious. It does not matter to them that you rarely make a uniform mistake. It matters that their uniform is right. It matters that we take time to know who they are. We see it season after season, families are often hurting in one way or another and they need to know that someone cares. Hopefully, the time that we spend with them lets them know that there is a church that cares.

I used to wait for that end of season moment to be amazed by all the seeds we got to plant during our time with players. Now, I try to remember that every contact with a player or a parent is an opportunity to get to know them and to plant a seed. I still get excited to get it all organized. I am just like that. But, I am learning to be even more excited by the doors to ministry that open because of Upward Soccer. So when I admire the awards night crowd, I pray that we continue to strive to plant the seeds of the gospel message and show our community that we care.