During that week, something happened to me. I found myself, normally shy and quiet, in conversations with Belizeans every second of the day. Something in me longed to know these people better, to hear their stories, and to see the kind of life they had inside of them. As they shared their hearts, I began to search my own. These people seemed content with who they were, who God was, and the life they had–something I longed for. I realized that my whole life was about trying to be somebody important. I wanted other people to like me and think I was special by the clothes I wore, the girls I dated, the sports I played, and the friends I had. I started to realize that I had been letting other people shape me. And if I was most concerned about what other people had to say, how could I find out who God had made me to be? All of a sudden, I found myself searching for truth. Life started to make sense more than it ever had. Through my work in Belize, I started to realize that I was made to serve and help others. I didn’t care if it brought money or fame or power. I wanted to know I was living a life that would make a difference. And with all of this happening, I fell in love with Belize.
During the middle of the week, I started asking local missionaries and Belizeans what the kids did for recreation. “Outside of the schools, they do not have much to do,” one worker told me. “The older children either work in the fields or help take care of their younger brothers and sisters.” The sports programs and activities I loved and learned so much from as a kid were not even an option for them. The missionaries and locals expressed an overwhelming need for such programs, but a lack of funding, training, and resources had kept anything from becoming reality. In the final days of my trip, I started to see a vision for organized sports programs throughout Belize and even into other parts of the world.
It has been through God’s kindness, mercy, and grace that I have had the opportunity to found Sports Servants and bring others into this story. I am grateful and humbled by the responsibility, and delight in the reality that we are helping so many people. It is an honor to have such a role, and I hope to remain the leader as long as I have tears for the children of Belize. I am most grateful to God for giving me such an honor. He saved me from an empty life of selfish ambition and has given me a heart full of compassion for people.