Each Monday I will be posting Jake's Thought for the Week that he sends out to all the parents in his All Iowa Attack program.
They were given a training ground where they would learn to fulfill their purpose (Genesis 2:8-9)
This past week at my men’s group on Thursday morning we spent some time looking at various verses and discussing the idea of creation. We talked about all of the great things that came at the beginning of Genesis and the wonderful things that God created and how he created all of us in His image. What I found most inspiring on this early Thursday morning was the verse that quickly followed the story of creation, the verse I have above.
I can still remember when we moved to Minnesota when I was halfway through kindergarten. On my first day at my new school I entered the classroom and my new kindergarten teacher Mrs. Chaska introduced me to the class. Then she told me the first project any student was required to do was to write on their name tag what they wanted to be when they grew up. Well, that project took me a whole 5 seconds as I wrote I wanted to be an NBA Player.
There was no hesitation in my choice of future careers and the amazing thing was while other boys and girls were changing what they wanted to be when they grew up as we traveled from grade to grade, mine never did. In the first grade I was going to be an NBA player and in the 12th grade I was going to be an NBA player. When I arrived at Iowa State I knew I had to get a degree but I still knew I was going to be an NBA player. Now I did run into a slight problem. God was preparing me for something much greater than the NBA.
As I look back on all those days I can now see that the training ground the Lord had for me had nothing to do with playing in the NBA. Instead my purpose would be as coach, instructor and mentor to young people. When I was a freshman in high school one of the local mom’s called me one evening and asked if I would be interested in coaching her son's 4th grade boys team and they would pay me $500.00. I will never forget that evening because I had never had $500.00 and I thought I had won the lottery. They would pay me all of that money to do something I love. I can still remember all of the faces on that team and more importantly I can remember how I had no idea what to do! But, being as competitive as I was, I decided we were just going to be the best shooting team the Oakdale Athletic Association had ever seen. Well, we did not quite accomplish that goal as we averaged around 15ppg and won only two games. However, without me ever knowing it, the Lord was at work providing me a training ground and preparing my purpose.
As I fast forward to my junior year, my high school coach Mark Klingsporn came to me and asked if I would direct the Tartan High School youth basketball camp. Again, I can remember the first day of camp and all of those little faces staring at me and having no idea of what to really say. So, I told them some funny basketball stories and then soon discovered I could take up a lot of basketball camp time doing ball handling drills. Another thing I soon discovered was that the goal of the beginning of any basketball camp was to make all of the kids as tired as possible as it somehow erased many of the behavior issues. Instead of having to deal with the class clown who had never touched a basketball before (and was attending because his Mom and Dad could not handle him in the house any longer) I could quickly get him fighting for his life in the corner trying to catch his breath. Often times the class clown would choose not to attend the next day. The Lord was just providing me a training ground to fulfill his purpose without me ever knowing it.
Well, then my senior year in high school God decided to get my Dad involved in my training. My Dad was the head 9th grade boys coach at my high school and he came to me one evening and informed me the B team coach had quit and he wanted me to coach them in weekend tournaments. I quickly said yes, but that was only because I was very inexperienced. With the knowledge I have now gained I would probably have asked some more in depth questions like, why did the B team coach quit? However, it did not take me long to find out this answer. My first official year of full-time coaching I went 1-44, and please understand I am not exaggerating. I bet you can all gain a mental picture of how well I handled losing that much. I can remember one game at Burnsville High School where we scored 30 points. Yes the other team scored 70 but that was not our concern we were elated because we scored 30. As always God was just providing me the training ground for the purpose he was calling me to.
The stories could go on and on because God constantly stepped into my life without me ever knowing it, and prepared a way and purpose for me that I could never have imagined. I often get goose bumps thinking about writing this story again in 20 years because I often wonder what God is up to today in my life that I am not aware of yet. The story will continue as the Lord has provided us the world and all of the highs and lows that go with it to allow us to ultimately work for him in accomplishing His purpose and not ours!
I also wanted to include this....these were part of his announcements:
Now to the most important announcements of the week! We need to begin by wishing a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to the following Attack High School Girls and Coaches who won the State High School Girls Championships at Wells Fargo arena last week.
CONGRATULATIONS ATTACK PLAYERS AS YOU ARE NOW STATE CHAMPIONS:
Tember Schechinger: IKM-Manning High School
Ally Jensen: Ballard High School
Sammy Jensen: Ballard High School
Taylor Greenfield: Ballard High School
Jess Wheeler: Ballard High School
Sierra McVicker: Ballard High School
CONGRATULATIONS ATTACK COACHES AS YOU ARE NOW STATE CHAMPIONS:
Gene Rasmussen: IKM-Manning High School
GOOD LUCK TO THE FOLLOWING ALL IOWA ATTACK BOYS WHO WILL BE PLAYING IN THE HIGH SCHOOL BOYS STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS THIS WEEK AT WELLS FARGO ARENA!!
Harrison Barnes (Ames High School)
Bubu Palo (Ames High School)
Jesse Pritchard (Ames High School)
Ryan Mcgowan (Ames High School)
Travis Perry (Urbandale High School)
Reece Uhlenhopp (Urbandale High School)
Tyler Lange (Urbandale High School)
Drew Crawford (Linn Mar High School)
Dustin Peirce (Linn Mar High School)
Seth Van Deest (Bettendorf High School)
Quinton Behlers (Sioux City East High School)
Zach McCabe (Sioux City Heelan High School)
Casey Kasperbauer (Carroll High School)
Jordan Holdsworth (Carroll High School)
Alex Dorr (Nowalk High School)
Eric May (Dubuque Wahlert High School)
Hale Rickels (Solon High School)
Taylor Keislar (West Marshall High School)
LAST, BUT NOT LEAST WE NEED TO GIVE A BIG CONGRATULATIONS TO JOHN LAMB WHO IS A CURRENT PLAYER AT MOREHEAD STATE. JOHN LAMB WAS THE FIRST ALL IOWA ATTACK PLAYER TO RECEIVE A DIVISION ONE SCHOLARSHIP THREE YEARS AGO AND HE HAS AGAIN SET ANOTHER FIRST AS HE WILL BE THE FIRST ALL IOWA ATTACK BOYS GRADUATE TO PLAY IN THE NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT BEGINNING NEXT WEEK. MOREHEAD STATE DEFEATED AUSTIN PEAY IN DOUBLE OVERTIME OF THE OHIO VALLEY CHAMPIONSHIP TO RECEIVE AN AUTOMATIC BID TO THE NCAA TOURNAMENT.