On the incredible days and on the disastrous days of being a parent, it’s a relief to know the truth that my sons are God’s before they are mine and that they will be his for eternity. It’s a relief to know that I am not wholly responsible for them. I don’t need to figure out their futures on my own. As much as God is lending them breath, he is lending them to me –flesh of my flesh –closer than breathing –yet his handiwork. So I’m acutely aware that I am holding their hearts in borrowed time.
I have been working, albeit very slowly, through an amazing book, by an amazing author, with an amazing story. Dragons and Dirt, by a friend from church, Dalene Reyburn is a real and I mean real challenge. The honesty of writing, the real ness of reflection, the truth we don’t want to admit to is tangible. Daleen’s story and how she is challenged provides challenge yet inspiration for us normal mortals.
Sitting on the Gautrain, on my way back from a meeting at our Olympic committee where the discussion was about coaches, coaches education, coaching platform and the role of the higher education institutions and athletic departments, was the essence of the discussions. And then I read this about being a parent, about the incredible and tough days, the relief that they are ours, thankfully on loan, but realistically making our responsibility even greater. And then I read about holding our kids hearts in limited time
So I’m acutely aware that I am holding their hearts in borrowed time.
I just can’t help but thinking how similar and important our roles as coaches are when we dealing with our athletes and its athletes at all levels. I am reminded how much of a parent role a coach plays and had to play in many situations. I am reminded of the athletes I have coached, the ones I deal with on a daily basis and my own kids.
I am challenged in that, what I do, say, how I respond, react, the way I make them feel, either able or ‘not able’ to conquer, the words I use and the image I portray, it all has an affect on them. More importantly on their hearts.
So I realize it’s not about just being soft. I realize it’s about being real, about being fair, about creating belief, about making boundaries from a point of love and grace and it’s about being an honest you.
Be challenged coaches. Be real. Be honest. Be Careful. And know we hold our athletes hearts for a borrowed period of time, whether we want to or not.