Summer 2024

Training Table -- Unpackin' It (Week 10)


“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” Matthew 5:6

Lifelong Hunger

Life is hard and we go through many trials and difficulties. We talk about these times a lot and discuss the need to rely on God and trust Him during challenges. Many times we have no other option, but to turn to God. We are so desperate for Him to answer prayer and move in dramatic ways. I’m so thankful that He is there during those times.

I think of desperation when it comes to sports, too. If a team or player hasn’t had success they are determined or desperate to work hard and do whatever it takes to pursue greatness. My question today is, do we remain desperate and in prayer for God to move and continue to change us when we experience blessings and when everything is clicking?

Athletes can’t forget about training or their health or watching game film when they are on a winning streak or playing well. They have to continue to pursue greatness and stay hungry.  It can be easy to tell when players lose that hunger because their game starts to slip and they stop playing as well as they had been. When it comes to pursuing God and being desperate for Him to change us and grow us, and become more like Him to know Him better, we have to stay hungry.

Pslam 107:8-9 states: “Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.” Even in times of blessing and seasons where life is going well, our hunger should stay constant.

— Bryce Johnson, Sports Spectrum


“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.” Proverbs 12:15

Unexpected Salvation

Anthony Davis was the number one pick in the most recent NBA draft after his one successful season at Kentucky.

He was also given an amazing opportunity to play on the U.S. men’s Olympic basketball team that won gold. Davis was on the same team with great NBA players like Lebron James, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant. I read how Davis even got some advice from Lebron regarding women and money.  Davis hasn’t even stepped foot on an NBA court yet and he’s already getting advice from the MVP of the league.

I hope Davis listens and continues to remember what he learned from the veteran players he was around during the Olympics. Do we listen to the people in our lives that have more experience than us? Do we give good advice to those with less experience? It’s wise to listen.

— Bryce Johnson, Sports Spectrum


“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” Psalm 27:14

Primetime Viewing

During the Olympics there were major discussions about NBC not showing certain events live and instead saving them for primetime. They wanted to wait for the best time of the day so the most viewers could be watching.

There were many people who were too impatient and had to know the results when the events actually happened, so when they watched later they knew who won. I think NBC made great programming decisions because they realized that most people work during the day and wouldn’t have access to the results until the primetime viewing.

This mindset reminds me how God is. He sees the whole picture and He knows the best timing for us. We get impatient and want to know what’s going to happen, but God wants us to wait for Him to move when He sees fit.

NBC was aware events were taking place live and some fans would discover the outcome, but they knew the best time for fans to watch would be at night. Were you mad you had to wait until primetime or did you enjoy it because it was good timing after work and after dinner to lie on the couch and enjoy these athletes?

Lamentations 3:25 states: “The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.” God wants us to trust Him and be strong as we wait for Him.

—Bryce Johnson, Sports Spectrum


“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36

Overshadowed, But Not Forgotten

It must be pretty fun as an athlete to be a “prized” free agent.

I’m sure it’s tough to make a decision when multiple teams want you, but the reality is you are free to sign with whoever you want. You are free to find the best fit professionally and personally and free to find the deal that will provide the most money.

If we have accepted Christ, we can experience this type of freedom every day. We are free to live life knowing that we have eternal life. We are free to trust God when trials come our way. We are free to choose to follow Christ when temptation occurs. We are free from the punishment of sin because of what Jesus did on the cross. The Son has set us free.

— Bryce Johnson, Sports Spectrum


“I will not violate my covenant or alter the word that went forth from my lips.” Psalm 89:34 (ESV)

Embracing a Second Chance

It seems like every year there is a marquee NFL player who decides in the offseason that he is worth more than the original contract he signed.  The player will end up “holding out” for more money by missing practices and sometimes games until the team is willing to pay him what he thinks he deserves or when the player finally gives in.

My concern isn’t about players being greedy or trying to get the maximum amount of money they can before their short careers end, but I’m concerned about people living up to what they say. This translates to all walks of life when people don’t live up to their end of the bargain. You agree to a certain task getting done for a certain price, and then one of the parties doesn’t stick to the agreement.

Athletes are guilty for not living up to contracts or wanting to change the details in a contract after it’s been agreed upon, and we can also be guilty of not sticking by what we say. We tell God, family, friends, or business colleagues we are going to do something by a certain time or a certain way and sadly too many times it doesn’t happen. Sometimes we are on the other end of that, too, when someone else lets us down.

I hope this verse challenges us to stick by our commitments, covenants, promises, and contracts. We can also trust in the fact that there is only one who never breaks a promise and that’s who we should place our trust in.

— Bryce Johnson, Sports Spectrum


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.” Matthew 5:13

Going Long

Read Matthew 5:13 and meditate on how important Jesus says our impact on others should be in this world. Does that motivate you or make you feel comfortable about how you are living your life? Live in such a way that people will see Christ in you.