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    Upholding Christian Values in Hockey

    August 6, 2023

    In the fast and competitive world of hockey, players face numerous challenges that may test their Christian values. The intensity of the game, the pressure to win, and the emotions on the ice can create situations where it's easy to compromise our values. Lets explore how we we can best navigate the hockey rink and sometimes challenging environments while holding true.

    1. Flee from Temptation, Pursue Righteousness: In the heat of competition, it's essential to remember the words of 2 Timothy 2:22: "Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart." Upholding Christian values means avoiding actions or attitudes that go against God's principles. Whether it's resisting the urge to retaliate or showing sportsmanship to opponents, our conduct on the ice should align with our faith. That doesn't mean we don't stick up for ourselves or our teammates but we also must understand that just because we're playing a sport, it doesn't mean we can simply forget about our Christian values.

    2. Love Your Neighbor, even if they're on the other team! Hockey can be an intense and physical sport, but as Christians, we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:31). This means treating opponents with respect and kindness, even during heated moments. Showing grace and forgiveness on the ice can have a powerful impact, reflecting Christ's love to those around us.

    3. Control Your Anger and Emotions: Proverbs 29:11 reminds us, "Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end." In the heat of the game, it's easy for emotions to run high, but as Christians, we should seek to control our anger and respond with patience and self-control. This not only honors God but also helps us maintain a clear mind to make better decisions on the ice.

    4. Language in locker rooms: Just as athletes train their bodies for peak performance, they should also cultivate a mindset that reflects respect and discipline, this extends to avoiding profanity and foul language, which can unfortunately often become prevelant in hockey locker rooms. Ephesians 4:29 advises us to "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." Set an example for your teammates by how you conduct yourselves and don't give in to peer pressure if bad habits are forming with others.

    5. Seek Opportunities for Witness: Hockey provides a unique platform to share our faith with teammates, opponents, and fans. 1 Peter 3:15 encourages us to always be prepared to give a reason for the hope that we have in Christ. By living out our faith, we create opportunities to share the love of God and the transformational power of faith in Christ.