USA Rugby went bankrupt over the summer, the November test series we normally would play in Europe has been canceled, and we’re just hoping to be able to host a few games against Canada this fall. I have no idea if that will actually happen or not, but I’m going to keep training every day as if it will.
Some days it’s easy to stay motivated to keep training and preparing for the hope of an upcoming season. Other days it isn’t as easy. But I’ve always had faith in my rugby career. Having just signed with the San Diego Legion to play for another season, I’m excited to be able to continue to grow the game of rugby here in the States.
Playing rugby in the U.S. is such a blessing, but it has always been a challenge to maintain the physical, skill and game standards that are demanded at the international level. If I want to prepare to play for USA Rugby, I need to play at a level higher than my environment. Even though I don’t have an international setup to play — we don’t even have professional facilities in which to play in right now — I have to train at that level. Being battle-tested out of season will prepare me for the season ahead.
Most of my career has been behind closed doors, but I’ve always tried to plant the seeds and do the things I know will make me perform better when my time comes. I’m convicted of my mission and I’m connected to God. Therefore, I don’t have to worry about what tomorrow will bring.
Even in the midst of a season that seems somewhat chaotic and unpredictable, I am finding moments throughout each day to praise God and sing out to Him. Every day, I have the choice to praise God for what He’s doing in my life. I’m fortunate that I get to get in front of 24 kids every Tuesday and Thursday to coach rugby right now. As I do, I try to listen to God as He teaches me how I can display His love to each one of them.
In every circumstance — at home, in my marriage or on the rugby field — I try to find God in the midst of it. There is so much unrest and choosing of sides in our world right now. If prior to our recent reality I wasn’t doing the things I needed to do in order to hear God’s voice and be in His presence continually, I would probably be out there with everyone else, trying to grasp things that don’t lead to the purpose we have in Christ. Instead, because of God’s grace, I have my identity in Him.
There are so many things in this life that God equips us with. For so long I had to convince myself that I could play rugby at the international level if I trained hard enough, but I had to equip myself to be ready for what may come. Because I’ve taken the step to prepare and be ready for that season, I’ve positioned myself for the battle.
God asks us to do the same thing with our faith — prepare our hearts and minds at all times to be ready for when the battle strikes. God steps through and equips us with everything we need for every season, we just need to draw close to Him.
— Nate Augspurger, USA Rugby and San Diego Legion player
Nate Augspurger is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing articles and opinions. Check out Nate’s Increase profile here.
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