Life's Playing Field

It was halftime and we were behind. I was coaching my soccer girls telling them that regardless of the score, they needed to stay in the game. I was encouraging them to give it their all. To hold nothing back. I sent them back in for the second half with, "Go leave it on the field girls."

As I was driving home I was thinking about that game, about those girls. I was so proud of them.

It was then that my personal life Coach stepped in and I was challenged.

Are you giving the things of your life everything you've got? Are you giving it your all, regardless of how you think it is going now, or how you think it will end? Are you losing heart or are you staying fully engaged in the game?

As I was considering my efforts, the phrase "death crawl" entered my mind.

The death crawl clip from "Facing the Giants" (start at 50 seconds).

In that moment I was reminded, this is the level of effort I should pour into each and every thing in my life.

At times I find myself screaming out, "God, this hurts! It is too heavy! I'm about out of strength! God, I think this is too hard! I can't do this! How much farther do I have to go?"

Even as I am calling out, He emphatically responds, "Don't quit until you've got nothing left! I know it hurts! Give me your very best! Your very best! Your very best! I know it's hard! Don't quit! Don't quit! Do not quit!"

Oh, it would be so easy to give up. To let the life happen without effort on my part. To just be a part of the team without really playing the game.

To not choose the hard work, the effort, the pain. To take the easy road. To let life fall as it may. At times that sounds so inviting. So welcoming. So... comfortable.

But, I know that it is these times of my death crawl that condition and prepare me for the big game. It is the process that leaves me ready for what God has for me.

I must stay in the game, in the process. I must give it everything I've got. I must not leave anything behind. I must give it more than I can even imagine I can give. I must leave it all on the field... of life.

I could tell at the end of that soccer game that my girls had played with everything they had. Even so, we did not pull out the win.

As we huddled together at the end of the game, I reminded my girls that this particular game was about more than soccer, it was about a life lesson. Regardless of what we encounter in life, doing our absolute best makes us a winner every time.

As I drove home from that game, I realized it was about more than a life lesson for my soccer team. It became a personal life lesson and reminder for me.

Embrace the process. Learn from it. Give it all you've got. Leave nothing on the field. Do your absolute best for the glory of God, and leave the rest up to Him.

Okay, so who's in? It's not easy, but it's so very worth it! I personally guarantee that our Coach never makes a bad decision. Even better, He's already got the final win done and sealed.

Who will join me on the field?


  1. This is such a perfect analogy Donnetta. There are so many times I just want to give up and opt out, but it is those times when we really do give it our best that the blessing comes.

  2. Yes! At times I think I just want to sit on the bench, but that is SO boring... and the victory doesn't really belong to me. I also need to "leave everything on the field." Thanks for the encouragement. *;)

  3. Reminds me, too, of the scene in C.S. Lewis' Horse and His Boy where Shasta and the horses are traveling across the desert and think they're giving their all until a Lion chases them and they realize they can run faster still.

    Your words on pain vs. comfort are all too familiar. Don't we all prefer comfort?

  4. Awesome. Thank you.

  5. Read this post yesterday and I'm coming back to tell you that it stuck with me all day. It's been a challenging week for me, and your thoughts on this were just what I needed to hear. Thanks, Donnetta!


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