About three years ago (when we first arrived in San Diego) Rob Yackley and I walked into the office of the newly hired varsity basketball coach for San Diego High and asked if he needed help. Little we know that this coach (Ryan) was praying just 45 minutes earlier to send him help. Needless to say we were hired on the spot. Rob became the assistant coach for the freshman team and I helped Ryan coach the varsity team. God gave us great favor during our time at SD High as it quickly became clear that we were there to do much more than coach basketball. We lead devotionals before game time, we gave rides to practice, we invited a player who lives at a homeless shelter into our community, and we had the privilege of being a part of the change God was about to do in Ryan’s life.
After our 2nd year at San Diego high, Ryan was let go because of budget cut backs. This created a bit of a crisis for Ryan as he had virtually no income to provide for his family and it was the first time in years that he was away from the game of basketball. This forced him to re-evaluate and question how God designed him to live into the story of God.
Right around this time we began hosting a 10-week workshop in our home called life compass, a curriculum that helps leaders discover what their contribution to the Kingdom of God is to be. We invited Ryan into this and he enthusiastically said wanted in!
Fast-forward 8 weeks and it’s time for those in the workshop to share the culmination of their work (their vision statement for their life). Sharing your vision statement is no small task as for many this is the first time they publicly own what God has uniquely created them for.
When his PowerPoint slide appeared on the screen he read his statement with passion, humility, and with a confidence that this is what God has called him to be. After sharing his statement he said a few extra words about the impact his has made on his life. With tears in his eyes he expressed he has only come to realize and own his dreams by being in the context of our community.
In just a few months Ryan and his family will be moving to New Jersey to pursue his dream to become a Pastor. He is amazed at the graciousness of God as he provided a full ride scholarship to Princeton to enable him to further pursue what God has created him for.