“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God — children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” — John 1:12-13
You weren’t born to be an athlete. I know, perhaps that’s the opposite of what your coaches, teammates or maybe even your parents have told you your whole life. But if you were born to be an athlete, your purpose would be finished when you’re done playing. Considering most athletic careers are finished before the age of 30, that truth should be a relief.
This isn’t limited to athletes, though. None of us are born for a career. In all we do and in all we are, we are born for a purpose with an identity determined by our Creator. I’m a pastor. Maybe you’re an athlete. But our identity is the same: We are imperfect children of a perfect Father. The more you understand that truth and live out of that identity, the more you’ll enjoy each unique moment, celebrate with humility, and face disappointment with stability.
Years ago, I called an athlete friend of mine following a brutal loss in a big elimination game. My kids — young at the time — were very concerned that he would be very sad, and they wanted to check on him. I asked him how he was holding up, and he said, “I’m really disappointed. But it’s a game, and I got to play in it. One day I won’t be able to enjoy this.” It was an important lesson for my kids, and a welcome reminder for me.
Our worth, our joy and our hope isn’t in our position.
— Steve Hawthorne, New York Red Bulls chaplain
If you would like to submit a devotional, please email all submissions to