We are so excited to walk through this new door that God has opened for us in the form of Soccer Camps. As many of you know mid December through the end of February marks our “Summer” here in Panama. That means, for most of the kids, there is NOTHING TO DO! Well, it is our heart to do something about this by offering an inexpensive alternative to summer bordem. We named the camp “Preparate” translated in English “prepare yourself or get yourself ready”. We are using Soccer as a tool not only to prepare them physically, but also as an avenue to present Jesus Christ!
We come to a local church and use their youth and young adults as leaders and coaches for the camp so that long lasting relationships, mentorships and discipleship can begin to take root. Here is one of those youth, Ernesto, teaching the girls how to use the correct part of their foot to make a shot. (By the way Ernesto plays professionally for the selection of Panama and is the newphew of the pastor! He was a GREAT help.) Below he is teaching the boys how to jump and head the ball for a goal.
As I mentioned, not only did we teach various skills of soccer, but also, we had small group times for teaching a daily biblical theme. We used 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 as our theme verses. We taught them how to run to receive a prize and to train for the crown. We alsotaught them how to fight against adversaries external and internal. On Saturday we invited all of the parents to come and observe what we taught to their kids. Below are the 2 pastors sharing on the theme for Saturday; Preparate Jesus viene (Get ready or prepare yourself Jesus is coming) Also the pastors invited all to receive Jesus as the Lord and Saviour and also gave an invitation to the church for the following day.
Innocente, the pastor on the right, shared with me this testimony a week following their soccer camp. The following Sunday the were so many visitors (kids and parents) in their service that the had to bring out the “barrels and benches” for people to have places to sit!