Tonight I will start up another men’s hoops fellowship. As I lead these fellowships I always want to have a purpose! If it is just about shooting hoops then go to the rec. center or the park. I think we spend way too much time just going through the motions of life. I have decided for this outreach to use a book I have been reading called Coach Wooden’s Pyramid of Success (which I mentioned in last week’s devo.)
My goal is to key on what it takes to be good “ambassadors” for Jesus Christ. We use the “ambassador” title often in our ministry. In fact I plan to label this group “The Ambassador Club.” I have written on other occasions about the idea of an ambassador, yet feel led to expound on it even more.
In many sports programs there are dress codes and behavior codes – with the reminder that players represent the organization at all times. This is even true in the NBA where there is a very specific “business casual” dress code. Some may wonder what the point is of having such regulations.
I can tell you from personal experience as a player and coach that there are certain things you do that put you in a mindset of being ready to play – of being serious. That is where the rubber meets the road in my mind – what is it that gets you “game ready”? It also involves letting others see that you are ready!
In life I think this involves the character issues that one carries into the game more than the physical clothing. That is why I plan to work through this book with the men (and also with some young men going on a trip with us in April.) I think it is important to develop integrity, honesty, poise, team spirit, etc.
Yet, the starting point for us as believers is with a reminder – a realization – of what Christ has done for us! We are new creatures in Christ! And He left us with the job of being “ambassadors.”
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
(2 Corinthians 5)
Believer, you are an ambassador! Remember though that being an ambassador is not just about how you “look”; but it is also about being a mouthpiece. Make sure you are “game ready”!