Sunday, July 18, 2010


Yesterday was the first swim meet of our season.  Swim team has always held a special place in my heart.  For many years, I knew where I would be every Saturday morning.  I can still locate the pool in every town that has a pool in the area. I swam for the Palmerston Piranhas (now the Minto Minnows due to redrawing of municipal lines) until I aged out at 18.  I helped coach  the 8 and under swimmers, especially in entries and turns.  Many of those 8 and under swimmers have now aged out, many of those still left are swimming in the oldest age group (one is still swimming 11/12, but he was about 3 when I coached him).  Between my own races I would help with marshalling.  Marshalling is the process of sorting all the swimmers into heats and lanes and making sure they get to the right lane at the right time for their race.  For 25m events it also means getting the cards to the timer at the end of the pool.  The older kids are very good and putting themselves in order (they can read and understand their own cards), but for the wee ones it involves leading them from one marshalling bench to the next to the end of the pool and checking and re-checking their cards.  I loved it.
Then I got old and aged out.  I started working camp jobs during the summers and was never home for meets.  I figured I was done with swim team.  Then, this spring the decision was made to start a transition to a software program called "Meet Manager".  The only problem with this transition - no one knew how to run the software. Mom was unofficially put in charge of it since she has been grand marshaller for years. But Mom is a busy lady and not always the greatest with computers, especially learning new things (she is getting better, for reals).  I, on the other hand, am not as busy as Mommy and I love computers.  It was only natural that I learn the software and then come to the meets to help with the transition.
As I learned the software, I came to realize that some pretty important decisions were going to need to be made.  Decisions that would affect all the coaches and swimmers, and the running of the meets. At first I was going to Mom or Mr. Lucas (an important parent volunteer who pulls a lot of weight in the league) with every question.  This got old pretty fast. It made progress slow.  I started making decisions on my own.  Every time I made a decision I was backed by Mr. Lucas.  If I e-mailed coaches and said that I needed their entries by a certain time, Mr. Lucas supported that.  After yesterday's meet, when I decided that we would not be able to accept Saturday morning entries next week and e-mailed coaches indicating this (under the old system we always accepted Saturday morning entries...all entries were done Saturday morning), Mr. Lucas sent out a follow-up e-mailing informing coaches that what I said went.  We will not accept Saturday morning entries and the deadline I had set for entries was going to stick.
I'm a nobody.  I never was anybody important in the racing world. I was never particularly "good", never earned my team lots of points, don't have finances to support the purchases on new and better equipment, I don't have a coaching certificate.  I have nothing that should give me authority, yet I have it.  I have it because Mr. Lucas is backing me every step of the way and he has authority (he's a grown-up who contributes a lot to the league in a lot of ways) and he has given authority to me. If I had started trying to change things on my own, it would not have worked, but because I have the authority he has given me, I can make decisions and changes.
This made me think about something we talked about a lot at school this last year and something I've done a little reading on at home this summer. I still have a ton to learn, so this might not be completely sound, but it's my thoughts. As believers we have authority.  Jesus says to his disciples that he has been given authority (Matt. 28) and he says to his disciples that he gives them authority (Luke 10).  As his disciples, that means we have authority too.  Just as Mr. Lucas could give me authority because he had it, Jesus can give us authority because he has it.  Once I had authority from Mr. Lucas I could take care of some things on my own, without going through him, likewise (the way I understand what I've been reading), there are certain things on earth that we can take care of without having to go through Jesus.  That doesn't mean we don't need no means. Without the backing of Mr. Lucas, I'd be a nobody with no authority. Without Jesus, I'd be even more of a nobody.  With the backing of Mr. Lucas, I can say to a coach "until this point you can make changes, but then it is final".  With the backing of Jesus I can say to an evil spirit "you have to leave this alone", and it's not in my own authority (cuz I have none), but in the authority that Jesus has given me.  I think that's pretty nifty.
If you want to read more about this, I recommend "The Believer's Authority" by Kenneth E. Hagin.  I don't understand all that he writes, but he is clearer than I.

1 comment:

Glynis said...

Good thoughts, Joy! Mr.Lucas sounds like a wonderful man to have as your 'boss' - so to speak! And what a good analogy to Christ. Never think you are a nobody, though, my dear! You are fearfully and wonderfully made! That makes you pretty special. We are weak without Jesus, but we are not nobody! (How's that for a couple of double negatives, but not really!) x