Good morning 2019 C-Sports Baseball volunteers! For those of you who may be new, each Monday after weekend games I try to reach out to you with reflections from the game day. Saturday was chilly and a bit dreary but the games seemed to go very well. I could only be there for a few minutes into the first games as I had to attend a funeral in downtown Mobile. Mrs. Rose and Carlos run a great program so if you ever have any questions, look them up. They are always circulating around the fields.
I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for what you are doing for this ministry. We have three of us who are full time Rec staff and several part time staff who assist with team sports and who run the rec desk for 15 hours a day each week. We serve around 1400 children and youth in our sports programs each year and many more than that who come to walk our track, work out in our fitness room, and play on our basketball and volleyball courts. Without volunteers like you we could never accomplish the ministry God has called us to provide to these people in our community. Our efforts are to organize and equip. You are the ones who will be remembered by the players and parents who will learn and be transformed athletically and spiritually from your demeanor, your instruction, your words, and your example.
Often youth sports become just a play opportunity or a recreational time consumer, both of which are fine, but they are not our purpose. I love the passage in 1 Samuel Chapter 16 where Samuel is told by God to anoint a king. In verse 11 Samuel asks Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?” Jesse answered, “There is still the youngest, but he is tending the sheep.” That “youngest” son became King David, a man “after God’s own heart”. There is a song played often on Christian radio that repeats over and over, “When others see a shepherd boy, God may see a king.” Let me tell you something about the children you are leading on the ball fields. Most will one day be a mom or dad. Some will probably coach C-Sports teams one day. Some will own a business, build homes, help to heal the sick, lead through elected or appointed office, teach skills or academics, or lead others to Christ through ministry. Your influence on them this week…this season… will play a part in their development in terms of self-discipline, self-confidence, sportsmanship, teamwork, and Godliness. They will hear your devotion presentation and sense your sincerity. They will feel your love and concern as you make them better players and teammates through your guidance. This is not to put additional pressure on you in your volunteer position, but instead to validate God’s call upon you to make our community a better place one child (or ten) at a time.
On Sunday, May 5, we will have our 2019 C-Sports Baseball Celebration in our SANCTUARY (this time) at which time our teams will present a banner thanking you and all of our volunteers, and all of our players and parents will fill out and submit Response Cards indicating their reflections on the season. There are always 30 to 50 people of all ages who indicate that their life was changed or their faith was strengthened during the season. As great as that is, I always wonder, “Did we miss one?” Let’s all commit ourselves to Loving God, Loving people, and Changing the World as our Church’s mission directs. Thank you all for everything you have done, are doing, and will do as this baseball season continues.
See you on the fields!
In His Service,
Steve Ellisor, Recreation Minister
Christ United Methodist Church
“In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:6