Grace* is not an athlete. She doesn’t even like sports, yet her life changed because of them.
Last summer, Grace, a young girl from mainland China, was visiting family in Canada. While visiting, Grace’s aunt and uncle signed her up for FCA Canada’s Multi-Sport Camp. FCA Camp is a time of “inspiration and perspiration” for coaches and athletes to reach their potential through comprehensive athletic, spiritual and leadership training, with the ultimate goal of leading every coach and athlete into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ and His church. Grace strongly disliked sports and attending a sports camp was not how she pictured spending her summer vacation, but she reluctantly agreed to go.
As FCA Canada’s Multi-Sports Camp got underway one Monday morning, campers were assigned to Huddles, where they spent time learning how to develop a relationship with God on and off the playing field. It was during the camp’s first Huddle when Grace heard the name Jesus for the first time. She had no idea who Jesus was or what He did for her, but it immediately sparked her curiosity. Following the Huddle, Grace found herself going through the motions during the sports sessions.
But that wasn’t the case during the Bible study. As the campers gathered for a Bible lesson during the lunch break and she heard the name Jesus again, she wanted to know more. After lunch, Grace asked if she could skip the sports session and learn more about Jesus instead. Two coaches quickly agreed and spent time with Grace under a nearby tree. They shared the good news about Jesus and walked Grace through the Gospels. At the end of the day, Grace prayed to receive Jesus as her Lord and Savior, and she received a Bible in her heart language of Cantonese. The next day, Grace returned to Camp having read page after page of God’s Word—more in one night than some Christians read in one year! She spent the next two days under the same tree, learning from and being discipled by the coaches.
On Thursday morning, Grace arrived at Camp with a smile she could not contain. She joyfully shared she led her younger cousin to faith in Jesus on Wednesday evening! Grace’s cousin joined her at Camp that day, and they spent the rest of the week in discipleship under that special tree. As Camp ended, Grace shared, “I now get to take this message of Jesus back to MY country and be the first missionary to my family AND village!”
Even though Grace is not an athlete, or even a sports fan, she met Jesus at FCA Camp and became a changed person. Her story paints an incredible picture of how God is working through sports and coaches to impact the nations!
*Name changed to protect identity