Faith, Journal

Blessings from the Battlefield

“The warrior spirit reminds me that no one can stop me today. This is my day. Hidden inside of me is a warrior who reacts on instinct waiting to be released. As I buckle my chinstrap, instinct consumes my body and mind, knowing that I have worked harder and prepared myself to conquer the man across from me. Life will no longer be the same. I will push myself to unbearable pain only to have that pain fade away each time the ball is snapped. Fatigue plays no favorites in football. It only fears those who have worked hard in the days before the game. I visualize myself making plays only champions could make. My heart races as the game is fast and bodies move in blurred motion. Blood and sweat head off my body as the game goes on. My emotions take over, challenging my limits. It’s simple! The Battlefield is made up of warriors that play an intense game based upon the elements of speed, strength and endurance. This game is a way of life, and it has taught me all that I know. After each battle, I lie physically exhausted; left only to ponder on the Blessings from the Battlefield.”

– John Gray

As the season draws to a close, it’s easy to dwell in the moment—whether good or bad. Looking forward it is important to remember the lessons that were learned as the season progressed. The blessings that were given both on and off the field.

Those blessings look different for each player, coach, and family member- and yet they all revolve around one thing. Football.

That field has seen more blood, sweat, and tears than their family at home has—claiming its title of a battlefield. The victories won and battles lost hover over the minds of the people who call that field their second home.

Some teams will have coaches, players, and families cry tears of joy as they have “punched their ticket” to a playoff game—or luckily made it further into the playoff season.

These are the lucky ones. These teams will suit up for another week of practice, Hudl, pre-game meals, pep rallies, and game day. Each day builds on the anticipation of the upcoming game, the one that determines their team’s future in the playoffs. For them, a blessing from the battlefield.

The screams and tears from coaches, players, families, and fans echo through the stadium and parking lots. The cry of knowing that you are a champion. Region champions, district champions, and the coveted title of STATE champions. Holding the trophy, putting the hats or t-shirts on, and cry tears of joys and excitement of knowing that all of the sweat, frustration, and long weeks finally have paid off. The BIGGEST blessing from the battlefield.

Other teams will experience sadness as that game marked the last few minutes of their playing career—either with that specific team or for their entire athletic career.

This group will be filled with senior football players and their families, aspiring younger players who wanted to continue onward, coaching staff who poured their hearts and soul into the season, and the fans that dedicate their Friday nights to supporting their “home team.” These moments are often misconstrued but can become blessings from the battlefield when looking at the bigger picture.

Each season differs from year to year, as often does the staff and fan base. With all of that said, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the end goal changes. Not every team can make it far into playoff season, so teams will experience their blessings at different points over the next few weeks.

As these blessings outpour onto the fields, accept them with open arms. Embrace the joy of your team’s emotional journey to where they are at that moment. It is all worth it at the end. It is a blessing from the battlefield.

When the season officially closes for your family remember the highs and lows, the laughter and tears, and look back on those moments. Those memories will be talked about around dinner tables for years to come.

Always remember how blessed you are to play, coach, and support your team during this season of life. Blessings from the battlefield can stay with you forever.

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