"I love the sense of satisfaction that I get when I’ve done a swimming workout or race, and know that I gave my whole being and heart to God in every moment of the swim. It’s the best worship I can offer him."
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God;ùthis is your spiritual act of worship. Romans 12:1
Coaches in the UK sometimes worry about the fact that a particular player has become a Christian, thinking that they will have lost interest in the game and lost their competitive edge. This is based on a misunderstanding of Christianity,often on the part of the player.
Jay Dirksen suggests that two things can make the Christian sportsperson less effective - not understanding God's purpose for their sporting talents, and feeling that sport is no longer so important.
Christian players need to understand that "presenting their bodies to God as a living sacrifice"(Romans 12:1), involves being the best and most committed player that they can be. No Christian who understands this should ever lose their competitive edge. Faith in Christ and the way Christians play sport should be a seamless process.
I like what women-basketball player, Nancy Lieberman-Cline said, "We wanted to beat everyone but we weren't mean. We didn't curse. We tried to set the right example because we were representing Christ".
The Christian player who really understands what it is to use their talents for God's glory should, rather, be the most committed player in the club because they have the fundamental privilege of doing it for the Lord who gave them those talents.
As Christian sportspeople we must be people who give of our very best in all circumstances, win, lose or draw. That means not being a quitter and always trying to get the very best out of our performance. This is what presenting our bodies as a living sacrifice in the world of sport requires of us.