Hope and Healing: The Principle of Learning
“Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.” — Psalm 25:5
Maya Angelou once said, “We should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color.”
Cross-cultural ministry can be challenging, but with God, nothing’s impossible. Jesus commanded His disciples, “Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you…” (Matthew 28:19-20a). Cross-cultural ministry is important because we are all created in the image of God and have equal footing at the Cross, which means everyone has equal opportunity to know Jesus personally.
In an ever-changing world, our immutable God, who never changes, has plans to grow you in the image of His Son, Jesus. Your impact in your sport alone can be used to reach others with the love Jesus so perfectly exemplified. What are some ways you can get out of your comfort zone to minister to those who don’t look like you, or live where you live, talk the way you talk, or have the resources you have? The answer is simple. We can learn. Learning breeds growth and growing together builds community.
Here are some practical steps we can take when we have the opportunity to learn and minister to others on our teams, huddles, and communities:
- Research and educate yourself with the intent to understand the history and experiences of the people you serve.
- Ask questions and don’t try to solve all the problems in one day.
- Become more aware of someone else’s world by visiting churches in the community, neighborhoods, sporting events, or school events.
- Seek out a friend or ministry partner who is more familiar with that community, school, or ethnic group.
- Have faith in God that change will happen and continue to pray for His guidance and blessings daily.
- How can you be more effective in serving coaches and athletes in diverse communities or communities that are opposite of yours socio-economically?
- What are you willing to sacrifice to serve in another community than the one you are accustomed to?
- What does your community tapestry of ministry look like? What color threads could be added?
Deuteronomy 31:12; Proverbs 9:9; Philippians 4:9
“Abba Father, will You reveal Your heart to me for a cross-cultural ministry? Forgive me when I withdraw from uncomfortable situations that involve cross-cultural ministry and teach me to love others as You do, Lord. Help me to share the Gospel with others in every background or walk of life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”