Football is kind of a big deal…. This is certainly true in small towns all over Georgia. John Darsey, pastor of Redeemer Church of Madison jokingly told me if thieves wanted to make a fortune, they could probably do so on any given Friday night, because pretty much the whole town is at the local high school football game!
We love us some football here in Georgia. And just as many of us love Jesus, so it makes us sad to see our public school becoming increasingly hostile towards our Savior. But what can we do about it?
According to John Darsey, there is a lot we can do.
In my interview with John, he lays out play-by-play how his church has chosen to serve its community by coming alongside football players and coaches. He said he personally serves as a volunteer assistant football coach for the Morgan County High School team. In addition, many folks from his church have joined him in his quest to share Jesus simply by serving. They have cook teams who bring meals to the school and feed coaches and staff. Others work in whatever ways the coaching staff needs them - marking the fields before games or just helping clean up facilities. The folks at Redeemer are always willing to jump in and help.
And the seeds they have planted over the years are reaping a bountiful harvest. John said he has had the opportunity to share the Gospel with hundreds of young men and many coaches over the years because he came with no agenda other than to serve. Earning their trust paved the way for their hearts to be receptive to the Gospel. John humbly admitted he has had the honor of baptizing over one hundred students and seven coaches since he began his football ministry.
Ok, so maybe you're saying, "That's great, but football isn't my jam!"
That's ok! It's not mine either, so I've got some good news for you. You don't have to help out with football, or with any sports, if that's not your thing. John helped me realize there are PLENTY of ways to volunteer at your local schools. But there's one thing you need to keep in mind - don't go in there with an agenda. He suggests going to the school and telling them you'd like to volunteer your time. And if you don't have a kid at that school, all the better. Just go there to serve, and let the Lord do the leading. He will open the doors, in His time, for sharing the Gospel.
I have had the great opportunity to talk with many people who are working to be a source of light for Jesus in our public schools. There is a recurring theme I hear time after time, and that is to focus on what you CAN do. You CAN give your time to help with sports, or band or with mentoring programs. And don't forget organizations like FCA. Student-led faith-based organizations are currently protected under the law.
So take the ball and run it into the end zone! That's what you're supposed to do with the football, right?
I hope you enjoy my interview with John Darsey. If you would like more information about him and his church, go to redeemerchurchmadison.com
Football and The Gospel
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