As the Administrative Council was receiving an update on First Baptist Athletics (FBA) from Director Steve Carr, I heard something interesting.
As you may know, FBA is a recreational sports program that reaches out to over 3000 area children, youth and adult volunteers. For over forty years, First Baptist Church has offered the generous gift of its campus and facilities to our community for the purpose of good sports. It’s a generous gift we offer others in response to God’s graciousness to us.
As a recreational sports program, Steve shared news of a recent study that suggested the three (3) healthiest statements parents and grandparents can make BEFORE children participate in a game are…
I love you.
AFTER the competition, the only three statements that need to be made are…
Did you have fun?
I’m proud of you.
I love you.
There is no need for any aggrandizement like “you’re going to be an all-star” and no need for anything discouraging like “Here are a couple of things I noticed that you can work on.”
Just…. Have fun… I’m proud of you… I love you.
To make things even more interesting, the study suggests that when college athletes were asked what their parents said that made them feel great and brought them joy when they played sports, the six words most important to them were
“I love to watch you play.”
As kids gear up for soccer, band concerts, gymnastic practice and everything else they do, most parents will occasionally lose perspective and say something inappropriate or unhelpful.
It may help to remember these words …
Have fun. I’m proud of you. I love you.
These are words that affirm the effort of children and youth, the God who created them and the joy of life as it unfolds.
They are words of grace and blessing.