the lines are still good

Follow the happenings of an animated college tennis coach and his teams in their pursuit of an NCAA National Tennis Championship. It is always the impressive trophy that is displayed for all to admire that gets the attention, but it is the journey to claiming that trophy, the relationships built, the people served and the memories created, that live forever...and what I hope you will find interesting...

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Enter to Learn, Leave to Serve...

I am not sure if there are any coaches out there who love winning tennis matches more than I do.  I am not a great fan of losing either but if we learn from a loss, that can often be of more value than some wins.

That being said, these days, I get the most pleasure as a coach, from watching the personal growth of players.  I sometimes feel that my players are not given enough credit and appreciation for all that they do.  Truthfully, it probably bothers me more than them.  The reality is that they do a lot and I am proud of them.

Essentially, only 5% of what we do is play tennis matches!  Yet, this is often what the players are known for or recognized for.  The other 95% is what really makes them great.  What I like to call "the process".  Most coaches know this but most non-coaches do not.   Yes, we do win many tennis matches but that does not happen by accident.  "Those at the top of the mountain did not simply get dropped off there."  It's the 95% that got them there.

Life is really all about the the relationships made and the people served.  God has put us all on the earth to help others that He has placed in our path, for his glory.  This early in life understanding of this notion by many of my players has me most proud and reinforces why I do what I do.  Sometimes this old coach has a bad day, or shall we say some bad moments in a given day, and forgets "the why", so I am blessed to have such a reminder.

Some of our recent service activities are:

  • Delivering hearty meals to those community members in need who would otherwise not be able to provide for themselves via "Meals of Wheels".
  • Set up for, prepared and served the community Thanksgiving dinner at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Bronx, NY.
  • Set up for, prepared and served a fantastic feast at the St. Anthony's Shelter for the homeless in Bronx, NY.

I am so fortunate that the players understand how important service is and that they have an ability to positively affect other people's lives.  Perhaps more important is that they are learning that they have had, and continue to have, so many blessings in their lives that so many others do not.  Further, they are understanding gratitude for these blessings and for their providers.

I am so thankful for this and for those helping us along our way to the top of the mountain.  A special thanks to Concordia College's Director of Student Activities and Spiritual Life, Elizabeth Wagner.

Nuff said...