As professional athletes, we have so many opportunities to go out to schools, interact with fans, and sign autographs. And when I do, I always sign Matthew 10:39 — my favorite verse — under my signature:
“Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for My sake will find it.” — Matthew 10:39
This verse first stuck out to me during my senior year in high school. I had been asked to be president of FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) in high school and I said yes. I went home that day and God called me out with this verse. I realized that I had been a poser for a very long time. I was the guy who knew every worship song, had the cross necklace hanging around my neck, and could make my life look good, but I really didn’t want to win people over with Jesus. I didn’t want to get out and share my story. I didn’t want to lose my life every day so hopefully people would know who I represent.
I’m not perfect; I need a perfect Savior. So I thought, “If I can lose my life each day, I know that I’ll eventually find it.” And that’s what I began doing. I started losing my life for Christ, giving it to Him to see what He has in store. That’s how I found my life.
Whenever I include this verse in my autograph, I can’t help but wonder if little seeds like that will change lives, families and generations. Our family was changed by the Gospel, and now generations within our family are being changed. Kids are growing up in a house that loves the Lord. They’re seeing Mom and Dad pray for each other and pray for them. Hopefully they catch that fire and have that relationship with Christ that they get to then pass down.
We get to play football for just a little bit of our lives, and then we have the rest of our lives and all of eternity. So if we can change some lives during our time playing this game, that’s what it’s all about!
— Tress Way, Washington Redskins punter
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 TheIncrease.com for more stories and videos.