Okay, so I’m coaching soccer now.
Yep. I’m the coach of team 42 of the Boardman Soccer Association, better known as the Shadow. For those that know me, I’m sure you are surprised. So am I. It happened because we had waited to register our kids until the last possible moment. Money was tight over the summer. The problem was that we’d misunderstood the timing and ended up missing the registration deadline. But, they were in need of a coach for the under 10 division of the recreational league.
Brice, who had been daughter Emma’s coach for two years, had put my name in as a suggestion to be a coach this year. Obviously, you don’t have to be a soccer expert to pitch in. I was contacted by the head guy for the league who was willing to let my tardiness with registration slide because I was volunteering to coach.
Here’s the thing: I’ve never played soccer in an organized setting. All I had known about the game is what I’ve learned from my in-laws who live on the other side of the pond, from watching Olympics soccer and world cup matches, and from watching Brice work with Emma’s team. Brice loves the game and loves working with kids. He’s truly been my soccer-coach-for-kids mentor. And, get this, his approach is “let the kids have fun!” Right up my alley. Just check out the first chapter of my book on the menu of this blog site if you don’t believe me.
I used to have no idea what I was doing. Now I at least have a little. The internet gives me great ideas as well. The parents were completely fooled. Many of the were surprised when I shared that I have no background with soccer. Of course, that makes is clear that neither do they. Although some of them know more than I had thought, at least enough to know the meaning behind my suggestion to name our team Board-Man United. (hint: we live in Boardman, OH).
I’m actually having a good time now. Stepping up is hard to do because we have higher expectations – and lower estimations – of ourselves than other people do. To be sure, I wouldn’t have tried this unless I had been faced with telling my kids they couldn’t play soccer because of my oversight. With the obstacle removed I’ve found myself in a place I never thought I’d be, doing something I never thought I could do.
What obstacles are in your way that God could use you to be an important part of your community? Or, do you have a similar experience of doing something you never thought you could? It can do wonders for your comfort zone.