Using Your Gifts for Something Bigger than Yourself

29691_404838853504_108094648504_4277118_5636922_n“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always hopes, always perseveres.” I Corinthians 13:4-7

Several years ago I lived in a world that didn’t make God happy. I played on good teams and was paid good money, but I wasn’t happy. It was a dark world with many fake friendships; people who liked me for what I had.

When I met my future wife, she helped me know the true love of God. In the moment that I accepted Jesus and gave my life to Him, everything changed. I received a new lease on life with trusted friends, and in my job as a soccer player I had more respect from, and for,
my teammates.

In return, God touched my heart to share His blessings with the other teammates. In feeling called to do this, I started to make gospel CD’s to give to other teammates, and every chance I told them about Jesus.

I noticed that God changed my life using soccer as a weapon to talk more about His Kingdom and glory. What weapons has God given you to use?

By Diego Jose Martins

Diego Jose Martins is a professional soccer player and contributor to Sports Spectrum magazine. This devotional is taken from our most recent Training Table. Log in here to access our most recent Training Table. Subscribe here to receive 12 issues a year and a daily sports-related devotional.

An American Revolution

2004_July_Aug_TimHowardCoverAs soon as he crossed the Atlantic Ocean, Tim Howard began to open people’s eyes. Here was an American goalie playing at the top level in soccer-crazy England.

The 25-year-old Howard, who spent nearly six seasons with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars, signed with Manchester United of England’s Premier League last July, and he made an immediate impact upon reaching the United Kingdom. In fact, Howard helped Man U capture the coveted FA Cup on May 22 by shutting out Millwall 3-0 in the deciding game.

Click here to read the remainder of this throwback story on Tim Howard from Sports Spectrum’s July/August 2004 issue…

Fill Me Up

cha-081009-retirements“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10

What does a satisfying life look like? This question is something I chased after for a long time. It was something that, deep down, I longed for; to live a life that satisfied my heart but also made a difference in the lives of others. It was not until I was in my early 20’s that I came to see that God created me to be in a relationship with Him, but that He also gave me gifts that could be used to honor Him and serve others.

I always loved playing soccer and competing, but for most of my life I did it for the wrong reasons. I only started to understand the life that God really had in store for me when I learned how to use my gifts to build relationships, bridge cultural gaps, and share the message of hope around the world.

For the past 14 years, I have had the chance to play soccer professionally, but more than that I have had the chance to travel the world and tell others the story of the Lord who changed my life.

Christ desires to give us a life that satisfies our hearts and impacts the world. My hope for you is that you first enter the most important relationship with Christ, and then secondly, see how God desires to use you. When these two things happen, I truly believe you will have the full life that Christ offers.

By Dustin Swinehart

Dustin Swinehart is a professional soccer player and contributor to Sports Spectrum magazine. This devotional is taken from our most recent Training Table. Log in here to access our most recent Training Table. Subscribe here to receive 12 issues a year and a daily sports-related devotional.

The lives of MLB umpires and the ministry that keeps them afloat

4b2eede88b04b1dcdd497df409d7eb95What would it be like to be an MLB umpire? To deal with the continual verbal onslaught from players, coaches and fans? To be constantly reminded of your mistakes and treated like you are hardly human?

ESPN The Magazine recently ran a feature story about Pastor Dean Esskew and his ministry for MLB umpires, examining the lives and struggles of a group of people that are neglected in the world of sports. From the article: ”Pastor Dean has baptized 66 professional umpires, calling them safe in the only way that matters.”

Click here to read…

NEW Summer DigiMag now available for viewing

Featured

Summer 2014 DigiMag #1 FINAL2What happens when Sports Spectrum rides bikes with Switchfoot? Or how about when a biker tries to attain his Motocross dreams despite only having one arm? Or how about when a golf coach locks his keys in his car before the biggest golf tournament of the season?

Our first DigiMag of the summer is now available for viewing. This issue has exclusive feature stories on alternative rock band Switchfoot and Motocross rider Jason Griffin, and a new column from staff writer Stephen Copeland. We also have several closeups and content from the K-LOVE Fan Awards in Nashville, Tennessee, including a Q&A with Auburn head football coach Gus Malzahn.

Log in here to view. To receive 12 issues of Sports Spectrum magazine a year, three issues each season, subscribe HERE. Enjoy.

Uncommon Challenge