THE INCREASE: Brandon Boykin - Walking Through Open Doors

Since I spent all of last season on IR, I had a lot more time to spend at home with my wife than I had in the past six years playing in the league. During each season prior, we would always make sure to spend time together when I’d get home from practice or when I had a day off. But now we are able to do so much more together, spending most of our time with each other.

By having this opportunity, as a husband I’ve been able to realize the incredible strength my wife has, all the things she is capable of that I’m not. Recognizing more of her strengths, I’m able to understand and appreciate more of our partnership and how we can strengthen and build each other up.

My wife is a very talented wedding and event planner. She loves details and she’s good at making sure every last one is taken care of. Recently, we bought a house in Atlanta and as I watch her put all the details of our house together, I’m amazed.

Tess has sacrificed so much for me and my football career. Moving multiple times, being willing to travel with me when we play in other cities, and supporting me through all the ups and downs of my career has not been a small sacrifice. She’s put her career and ambitions on hold for me. And now (the silver lining of me being injured), I have the chance to really be there for her and support her in her dreams. I’m thankful for this role reversal, being able to be her helpmate when she needs me.

When I found myself on IR for the second season in a row, we both worried about what would happen next. Daily we would recite this verse to each other: “The Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7). We knew God had a plan for us but we weren’t sure what that was. We were reluctant to settle down and buy a house, not knowing where we might be next if a team called.

But we realized we didn’t want to live waiting, in fear of what may not come. We took a step of faith and bought a house in Atlanta and ever since, we’ve been amazed by the open doors and connections God’s given us. We know everything will come together for a greater purpose than we could imagine, and we want to be a part of that purpose. Us stepping out in faith, unafraid, has continued to build a bridge for us to reach our ultimate purpose of bringing glory to God. If this is where God wants us to be, we want to start now.

We’re also learning to take life as it comes. If God opens a door for me to play again, I’ll walk through that door. In the meantime, I’m enjoying working in television, fitness and being a support to my wife in her career. If God allows me to play again, I’ll use that platform to build on the other avenues He’s now given me.

Tess and I have been through so many trials and adversities in the past couple years, we know it all has to be for a reason. We’ve been through the valley only to see the light at the end of the tunnel, only to realize this journey was never just about football. We’ve been preparing for a bigger purpose. I wouldn’t change anything in the process. These years and the lessons we’ve learned have transformed us. You can’t put a price on that.

Brandon Boykin, NFL free agent

The Increase, part of the Sports Spectrum Network, is a community of Christian pro athletes sharing their personal stories of the decrease of self and the increase of Christ (John 3:30). Visit for more stories and videos.