Sunday, November 6, 2011

Personal Inventory: Sports & Spirituality

The prayer of St. Ignatius calls us to “give and not to count the cost.” This beautiful prayer of generosity is challenging for most people, but I believe most especially for sports fans. Why? Sports fans love counting. It would be hard to find a single Pittsburgh Steeler fan today who isn’t counting the cost of yards, carries, personal fouls, turnovers, in this loss to the Baltimore Ravens. At the very least we know both teams knew how “to fight and not to heed the wounds.” What a great game!We sports fans are no strangers to numbers and how they add up—from rankings, magic numbers, AP polls, betting lines, numbers on jerseys, retired numbers, seeds in tourneys, numbers of championships, titles and more, numbers are more than a marking in a win or loss column. To say that numbers can be sacred in sports is not an overstatement. And, so the symbiosis begins.

"Sports and Spirituality" is most successful when one can draw from our own experiences as an athlete or a sports fan to think more concretely about our spiritual life. And in the same way that not all athletic disciplines need be tedious, challenging or painful, nor should those in the spiritual life.Hence I created a “personal inventory” to help you take stock of the experiences in both domains that stand out, that have shaped you as the person you are and are proven highlights in your life. I hope this “light” discipline will reveal some insight of the Lord’s coaching, leading and guiding along the way. Besides we already know God doesn’t play favorites on football Saturdays…but His Mother does.

Personal Inventory: Sports

  1. My favorite sport to watch is….
  2. My favorite sport to play is…
  3. My favorite athlete is….
  4. My least favorite athlete is….
  5. My favorite sports team is…
  6. A sport I know very little about but would like to learn more is….
  7. The most memorable sports event I have attended is…
  8. I have read a great book about sports. It is…
  9. I have seen a great movie about sports. It is….
  10. The best athlete in all of sports is….
Personal Inventory: Spirituality
  1. A good parish/faith community I am familiar with…
  2. My favorite prayer is…
  3. My favorite Saint/saint is….
  4. My favorite spiritual discipline is…
  5. A faith tradition I know very little about but would like to learn more is….
  6. The most liturgical event I have attended is…
  7. I have read a great book about spirituality….
  8. I have seen a great movie about spirituality….
  9. An interesting religious studies/theology course I have taken is…
  10. A religious leader I admire greatly is…
If you have your own question that would like to share, please post e.g. "The hardest thing about being a sports fan for me is?" For the Eagles' fan who wrote that, other Eagles' fans probably know the answer.

Photo credits

USC vs. ND
Spiritual Discipline

1 comment:

  1. You guys look like you are having lots of fun. The beach is a magnificent backdrop for playing such a cool sport.

    Savannah Adams