3 Tips For Being A Good Sports Chaplain.
Tip #1 Don't Be A Fan!
The best compliment I received as a chaplain was, "thanks for not treating us like celebrities." There is no secret to serving in sports chaplaincy. It's simple. Don't be in awe of the people you are called to serve. When I have conversations with young people interested in sports chaplaincy, let me just say, it is revealing. Some long to be "in," others desire the notoriety and status, and some just want to live out a fantasy (I have heard it all). However, being a fan discredits and hinders you from being authentic.
Tip #2 Know The Key!
Here is the key to sports chaplaincy, there is no key! You yield every moment to the Lord and SERVE! You pray everyday for athletes, their families, agents, owners, executives, security, staff, and even the people screaming, "get your ice cold beer hereeeee!" Many don't know and many don't care that you are a sports chaplain. However, you must always be a walking reflection of the Lord.
The greatest compliment I received as a sports chaplain came from a group of players on their way to a game..."Thanks for NOT treating us like celebrities."
Tip #3 Be Ready For Anything!
Can you help a young family and organization deal with the sudden death of a healthy 24 year-old father? How about an athlete whose career is over because he could not move his hand one inches to the left fast enough? Can you hold information in confidence ignoring the press, family, and friends? Can you teach/share in a way that is engaging and doesn't make you look like a not-it-all? Lastly, can you be comfortable in your own skin, unimpressed, and flexible enough to flow with anything thrown your way? If you can do those things, IT STILL DOES NOT MAKE YOU A GOOD CHAPLAIN. There must be a reliance on the Holy Spirit to guide your heart, so that everything in you remains pure. #wearejustservants!