Monday, December 17, 2018

Picture This: My Spirituality Part V

When I am asked about Sports and Spirituality I usually say "it's a class inviting my students to learn about the spiritual life through the analogy of sports." That's a good "sales pitch." People get a small sense of what I do and they'll be sue to know—again—that it's much more than athletes pointing to the sky. I think however, the opening line of the book Sportuality: Finding Joy in the Games by Jeanne Hess offers a richer, more thoughtful explanation. Hess writes, "The arena, the stadium, the court, or the field can be our connection to the One, to the Creator, to the meaning and purpose we seek from deep within." I couldn't agree more.

As written on her website,  "In Sportuality: Finding Joy in the Games, author and sports coach Jeanne Hess has brought to the forefront a new language for sports. With a word, with a thought, says the author, new ways of living—and playing—can begin. Understanding the words that go into our sports language is the first step to restoring joy into the games we profess to love. And foundational to this language is her sportuality.

The introduction features both a pronunciation key and definition of the word.
Sportuality (spor-choo-al-i-tee)
noun: a way of finding joy in the games

Sportual (sport-choo-uhl)
adjective: of or pertaining to a person's ability to find joy in the games as a player, a coach, a manager, an official, or a fan.

Mat Dickey wrote, I had rather hoped the term "sportuality" was unique, but I suppose it's quite obvious if you think about it. 

If I were asked to offer a thought, I would admit the word has never resonated with me, but it can be tough to capture what we aim to do in the first unit of the course. Sportuality—a way of thinking of the relationship between sports and the spiritual life, helping young people understand and own their spirituality and find joy in all of it is exactly what we do. I suppose it's best evidenced by their response...their take aways...and their spirituality. That is what you will see here.

And so, the fifth installment of "Picture This: My Spirituality" will leave you with the images that they believe best illustrate their spirituality...or rather, Sportuality. Enjoy 
“People can do whatever they want if they just set their heart to it, and just never give up,
and just go out there and do it.” -Bethany Hamilton
"For when I am weak, then I am strong." 2 Corinthians 12:10
“A good attitude is essential, especially when struggling in workout or competition.
Even in an individual sport, any negativity can bring down your teammates, just as it would affect
another member of group therapy or a sibling.” —Haley Scott DeMaria 
“Deep down in my heart, I don’t believe I would ever choose God.The Bible tells us that we are chosen. I have always found this truth to resonate with me because on my own I would never choose God. I have simply responded to God’s invitation. Viewing it from God’s perspective, I was chosen. That is very humbling because I did nothing to be chosen.”
—Casey Martin
“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trials because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him." -James 1:12

Be sure to check out Picture This: My Spirituality 1-4

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