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A Welcomed "Time-Out" with Coach Derek Smith!

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A Welcomed "Time-Out" with Coach Derek Smith!

Once a year, FCA organizes an event it calls Coaches Time Out. 

FCA leaders, coaches and their spouses come together to be equipped for success in their ministries. 

The PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida was gracious enough to host this year’s rendezvous. 

I’ve attended this event each of the last 4 years. And I’m so grateful for a chance to get away from the hustle and get poured into by others. 

But I was particularly excited this year because of who joined us. 

Derek Smith was my FCA huddle coach at Palm Bay High. You can imagine how honored I was to have Derek and his wife, Christina, join me and Kate in Palm Beach Gardens. 

He and I got the chance to reminisce about the years he served with the Palm Bay High football team. 

Looking back on those years I played for the Pirates, each of us feel our FCA huddles were integral to our football team’s success on and off the field. One moment stands out ... 

Facing Lincoln High School, the team embraced one another in prayer on the sidelines. Moments later, Reggie Nelson blocked the Lincoln’s extra point in overtime. That sent us to the State Championship game. And Reggie would go on to become an NFL star for the Oakland Raiders.

Let me be clear: God’s providence might have led us to win the State Championship that year. But God’s Spirit was not working through that team merely so we could win football games. There was so much more happening ...

Every Thursday night, nearly the entire Varsity football team would come together. We’d eat dinner together. We’d fellowship together. A youth pastor or Christian leader would have an opportunity to speak to us. It was awesome – these high school football players showed up each week hungry to hear God’s word.

Coach Smith’s leadership was impressed upon me and the hearts of so many young men on that football team. I will always remember the impact Coach had on me and my journey into a relationship with Jesus. Countless other Palm Bay High athletes surely share my sentiments. As do athletes around the country who’ve been blessed with passionate leaders dedicated to living and teaching through Christ.

Thank you to all who make Coaches’ Time-Out happen.

And thank you, Derek and Christina.

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