To Ball Or Not To Ball

LeBron James has just announced he’s going to be taking his talents to a new team, and it just so happens to be the same team I daydreamed of playing for when I was eleven years old; The Lakers. While that dream quickly left, I soon picked up another… and another… and yet another. I still dream of doing great things today, except these days those things are a whole lot grander than being an NBA superstar.

Recently, my wife and I were given the keys to the Aroma Cafe. Our responsibility doubled (even tripled maybe!) overnight and because of that, the hours and work we’ve been putting in have as well. When things like this happen, changes are a natural consequence, considering I can’t just add another ten hours to each day. One of those changes was the decision to quit playing basketball every week.

For the last year that I’ve lived in Taiwan, I’ve faithfully played basketball most Friday nights. Because of this, I’ve gained a number of new friends, all of which are unbelievers. Friday night ball means showing these friends Christ in me. It’s a push for me to stay active and healthy. It’s also one of the few places that I am able to frequent that is an all 中文 speaking environment and so it forces me to practice my language. There’s a lot of good that comes from this simple weekly activity.

Yet, as God redirected our path this summer, I felt Him taking this away from me. Needless to say, I was angry. Why would God take something that is so obviously good away from me? Because He’s better than basketball.

I do not mean to imply that God cannot still form me through basketball, but right now, He’s giving me more of Him through this new role in the Aroma ministry. As I choose Him before the people and things He’s been using, I place my trust in the eternal (and perfect) source instead of the temporary.

What’s funny is that I learned this lesson through a text that one of my basketball friends sent me. Read it below:

“Now at this point business is a really big part of your life. Take good care of it before getting back to the court. This is gonna be tough for you but Jesus gonna help you.

Whoah. I’m not sure where this friend puts his faith, but Holy Spirit delivered a breath of fresh air straight into my lungs through this friend.

Thank you, Father, for your constant reminders.

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah‬ ‭43:19‬ ‭NIV‬‬)

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