Blood sweat and tears have been shed in this jersey. I have actually fought in this Jersey, for God, this school and my team. All my life I have actually played soccer with the goal to never “plateau” or to stop getting better, to constantly accomplish the next level. I have played soccer because I was 4 years of ages and this jersey embodies my experiences as much as this point. This jersey represents not just soccer, however my accomplishments, my beats, my enthusiasm, my hatred, the impact it has had on my life, and far more.
However most significantly this jersey represents God in my life, and how soccer has been the driver for God to minister through me.
I started off my college soccer career playing department 1 soccer at Sacramento State in the second hardest conference in the nation, the big west. As a freshman I had the 4th most minutes used the entire team, I had a full ride, and some may state my life had actually been established perfectly.
But by then end of the season I found myself sensation empty, something was missing out on. The more I thought about it the clearer it ended up being, I had all of this but I didn’t have what mattered most, God. So I took a leap of faith and left sac state to pursue a much deeper and more powerful relationship with God. I had no intention of playing soccer any longer or concerning APU. However among my excellent friends who plays here at Azusa persuaded me to come and examine it out.
Having actually done this I found myself in a position, for the very first time in my life, where my faith and my enthusiasm have actually been able to correspond, through wearing this jersey.
This brings me to my 2nd point, which is that not just am I able to play soccer for God and represent my faith, but I am able to in fact minister to individuals through my sport. This summer I experimented with and made a semi professional group known as the Southern California Seahorses. This group plays at the highest level possible for college athletes while still permitting them to preserve collegiate eligibility. The Seahorses are a Christian based organization whose primary objective is to mold boys into, not fantastic soccer gamers who are Christians, however Christians who are fantastic soccer gamers.
You may wonder what the difference is, though it is rather small in semantics the significance is nothing short of incredible. I am now proud to call myself a Christian who happens to play soccer. The difference is what do you put first, your passion and your goals, or God? For the first time in my life, I have put God above my goals, I have put aside my dreams to live to serve God, and in return God has blessed me by allowing to me to still pursue my goal by ministering through soccer. IV. As I said before, this Jersey embodies my life up to this point, why? Because soccer has been the center of my life, everything has revolved around it, and finally I am now able to combine the two biggest things in my life, my faith, and my passion for soccer, and am blessed to be able to practice both on a daily basis. For me the question that brought the most clarity, was when I was asked, “Do you call yourself a soccer player who is Christian, or a Christian who happens to play soccer?”
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