Last year I was leaving something comfortable and going somewhere completely new by switching teams. I had to leave a brotherhood I could lean on at all times and build new relationships with guys I had never met before. These things take time; lifelong relationships don’t happen overnight.
In fact, it was a whole organization change, from the top down. We all had a lot of adjusting to do. I wasn’t there before this year, but I felt like this year was going to bring something special for this team.
Most of this was sparked by the new head coach, Matt Nagy, coming in. Matt is young, fiery, and knows what it takes to win. He’s known to be one of the most player-driven coaches and I couldn’t agree more. We can easily walk into Matt’s office at anytime to talk to him about anything. It doesn’t have to be about football. We often find ourselves just laughing and joking around together in there. Guys buy into him and he gains their trust. It makes a difference to be able to trust and admire someone who leads you. The guys on the team are great too. These guys know how to win and expect to win, which is a major factor. They make it fun to come to work every day!
My family and I are eager to get plugged into a church, something we struggled with last season in Chicago. We were going to one and then the pastor left. Then we started at another and the pastor there left too. We knew we needed a leader we could follow and a congregation to be a part of. We all need that. Each member of the Church brings a unique skill set and personality to the body of Christ. The more Christ-followers you have working and serving together, the more you can serve and bless others. You can’t just have one person on the grind to see the Kingdom of God grow.
In the same way, our team has a great group of Christian guys on it, but what we need to do is come together to impact our community and each other. When action is lacking, faith is stagnant. When people aren’t coming to chapel because they have other things to do or the speaker isn’t their favorite, it’s hard to gain momentum for the group. It doesn’t matter if you don’t prefer the worship or the style of message at church, you have to be able to gather together to walk out this faith with other Christ-followers. It’s about living out your faith with your teammates.
This year, I’m asking God for clarity in my own life. I’m learning how to find healthy and productive ways to cope with stress — from life and from the game. I’m not going to run away from issues or worries any more, I’m going to break that cycle and find peace in the spiritual weapons God gives us to fight against stress. I’m excited and trusting God for what He has for us this year ahead.
— Trey Burton, Chicago Bears tight end
Trey Burton is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing monthly articles and opinions.
Check out Trey’s Increase profile here: http://theincreasefootball.com/author/trey-burton/
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