Hoosiers, Hoops, and High School
Making the most of every opportunity… – Eph. 5:16a NIV
Can you hear it? Bruce Springsteen singing “Glory days, well they’ll pass you by.” That song was extremely popular when I was in high school, but I’m not sure I understood that particular phrase then. And, to be honest, I’ve always lived with the mantra “the best is yet to come.” So far that has been the case.
But I’m often reminded of some thrilling high school moments this time of year. High school basketball playoffs are in full stride. March Madness is around the corner. And the movie Hoosiers, another mid 80’s classic, is being played on the movie channels. This is one of my all-time favorite sports movies.
Now I was not a high school basketball player. Well, unless you count a one-on-one competition at FFA camp where I performed rather well. But I think I was the only one not playing in cowboy boots. Bottom line, I could not have made the team at Madison County High if it had carried a roster thirty deep. They were the 1988 State Champions, and their first 5 off the bench may have been one of the best teams in the state as well. While I did not play, it was certainly fun to watch this fast pace team go all the way to the title game at Georgia Tech’s coliseum and win it!
While I am finally getting accustomed to the purple and gold of Athens Christian School, where my children attend and play high school sports, I will always bleed red and gray and be a Red Raider. But more recently, I’ve enjoyed watching an ACS basketball team that reminds me a lot of that MCHS state Championship team from ’88. Like that team, this team has a star headed to UGA next year. And, like the ’88 Raiders, he’s not a one man show. They are a well-balanced and extremely talented team. And they are fun to watch.
I’m not sure how the next week will play out. But if I could challenge the seniors on this team to do anything, it would be to make the most of the opportunity that lies before you. And I would like to encourage all high school students not to waste these Glory Days. Oh, they will pass you by. And you can live believing that the best is yet to come. But you never get these days back.
For the Christ-follower, that means make the most of every opportunity to be the witness that God has called you to be. I certainly missed some opportunities that I regret. But I seized a few along the way. And I am thankful for that. Sell out for Christ now! Live with passion. Enjoy the journey. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Do your best in academics, athletics, and the arts.
And for the fans of the movie Hoosiers, if you can’t be a Jimmy Chitwood, be a Strap Purl. Be a person of prayer, walk with God, and seize your moment when it comes! It will come. Then tell folks, “It’s the Lord, I can feel His strength!”