July 25, 2011
The following is written by Mike Hahn, Founder and President of His Little Feet.
In September of 2009 I found myself in Ouanaminthe, Haiti on a cement basketball court with about 30 Haitian boys. Because I stand 6’7″ I was told I should probably play on the “little boys” team. The older boys thought that the little boys could use some help.
The “little boys” were victorious. After the game one of the boys said, “Hey, can you teach me to play? I want you to be my coach.” I smiled and agreed to his request. But I told him if I was his coach I would want to teach him about Jesus too. He agreed.
This little boy was strong, determined, and talented. He clearly had a passion for the game of basketball. I showed him how to dribble, to pass, and most importantly to shoot. I showed him how to do a “crossover” dribble move. To my surprise he was able to follow each move I showed him. I told him that I thought he was a good basketball player and he had the potential to be great if he practiced.
One year later I found myself on a cement basketball court in Lincoln, Nebraska with this same little boy. His name is Jefferson and he was a His Little Feet Choir member. We were playing on the same basketball court that I grew up playing on. He was even more impressive now than he was last year!
This time, however, I wasn’t just teaching him the game of basketball- I was also teaching him about Jesus. I explained that in order to be a good basketball player you have to practice a lot and you have to be disciplined. This means you have to practice dribbling, passing, and shooting even when you don’t feel like it.
I told Jefferson that to follow Jesus we have to be disciplined too. We need to pray, study, give, and worship even when we don’t feel like it. That same evening I shared a scripture with him:
“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:11
Jefferson told me he likes discipline. The good news is God used discipline in Jefferson’s life to draw him closer to Jesus… and by the way he turned out to be a pretty good basketball player too.