If someone would have told us two years ago what the past 15 months would look like, it is unlikely any of us would have even been able to imagine what we have been through.
I will always remember where I was when COVID-19 began to shut down America. I was at the Swim & Dive National Championships in Ohio; we had to about-face and figure out how to go from competing for a national championship to getting our team home safely.
For all of us, that was just the beginning. I have spent the last 15 months planning and preparing, creating safety protocols, testing procedures and becoming an expert in things I knew nothing about a year ago—just as you have. It has both empowered and exhausted me, how about you?
Empowerment is vital. When an individual is motivated by a need, and knows they have the skillset necessary to address that need, there is an empowerment that triggers an internal motivation to do what must be done to serve others well. First Corinthians 15:58 says, “Be steadfast, immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord, your labor is not in vain.” The concept of being steadfast really speaks to me. Just stay steady, don’t allow yourself to get too high or too low, just put one foot in front of the other…work for the Lord’s glory, rather than the praise of man!
By nature, I am a problem solver and I love being a part of the solution; COVID-19 was a big problem that needed immediate and long-term solutions. Like so many across our campuses, I dove right in and learned everything I could, so I could aid our department in returning to sport in a safe and beneficial manner.
Early on, I realized the amount of knowledge required to tackle this endeavor was extravagant and fluid. Just when I thought I had something down, the information would change and we would have to adapt. This was how I went from feeling empowered to worn out.
As the weeks and months went on, I began to feel like I was at my max capacity mentally, emotionally and physically. I was spread so thin between my job and my family that I did not feel I was able to do anything well. It was a feeling I loathed, and I wasn’t the only one.
I am so grateful for my staff who walked this journey alongside me. Together, as a team, we lifted each other up when the one had a little extra to give that week. I am so proud of what we have been able to do here in athletics. We have provided opportunities for our student-athletes to participate in athletics and do so safely!
The end of May marked the end of our 2020-2021 athletics seasons and a difficult year for the FPU community. I can truly say the Lord has given me a peace that surpasses all understanding. All of us problem solvers at FPU still have a lot of work to do to prepare for the fall, but I am confident that the burden is not mine, or ours, alone. He shoulders it for us and walks alongside us, so our burden is light.
Mark 12:30-31 says, “Love the Lord your God with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. Love your neighbor as yourself.” As a sports medicine department, our takeaway from that verse is to “Love God. Love Others.” This has become our department motto. When whatever we do is done in love, it changes our hearts and allows us to abide with our savior Jesus Christ and offer his grace to all those we encounter.
Thank you for letting me share with you, and I wish you blessings as you walk through what the Lord has for you today!