The holiday season from Thanksgiving through the New Year can be a wonderful time with the family. Christmas for young children is magical and such a joy to watch. It is also a great time of year to renew our faith and be thankful for our blessings.
For those whose chosen career is coaching football, the holiday season is much different. The stress can dampen the holiday spirit. Some coaches are getting ready for a big game and others are worried about keeping their jobs. Coaches working for teams that didn’t meet expectations or coaches whose individual unit did not reach the expectation level of the head coach are worried about the next paycheck.
Whether you are a young coaching family or veteran coaching family it takes a toll. I remember all too well my younger coaching days when my future paycheck was in question. Both my wife and I would do our best to keep our spirits up around our 4 young children. No matter how hard we tried there were times the stress would break through the hard exterior we had built. My faith and the support of my wife and family is what helped me through the dark times.
Isaiah 60:2 “…Darkness covers the earth and total darkness the peoples; but the Lord will shine over you..”
The head coach being let go is what the media emphasizes. The head coach is the celebrity and most recognizable by the public so the media attention is expected. The assistant coaches are rarely mentioned but most affected. They don’t have the financial security of most head coaches and will have a much more difficult time finding a new employer. Assistant coach changes are simply a news flash at best on the ticker tape. The coaching world is not for anyone seeking job security. The holiday season or should I say the “firing season” is not a time relished by many football coaches.
I have always been inspired when I hear athletes going through a rough patch maintaining their optimism and persistence proclaiming that God has a plan. I applaud such belief, but worry some people may think that future is predetermined by God’s plan. God is all knowing. All knowing is not all causing. We will be defined by our own choices. Being strong in faith will give us confidence in our choices. By faith we know God will not forsake us.
I love the footprints in the sand poem:
…But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there have been only one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most you have not been there for me?”
The Lord replied, “The times when you have seen only one set of footprints is when I carried you.” ~ Mary Stevenson
There will be many changes this year as in any year. Some will be well publicized head coaching changes and other assistant coach changes. Some changes are necessary. Some changes are not necessary but rationalized by the decision makers to be the best for the organization.
Only the one deciding the fates of the coaches actually knows which of the two it is. Often the fans and media applaud the firing. The heads must roll approach keeps criticism at bay for a short time.
After enjoying the holiday season and welcoming in the new year, please keep the coaches in your prayers as they battle through the difficult time of the firing and hiring season.