Stones of Remembrance
by Ryan Krzykowski
In the Old Testament, after hundreds of years of captivity and slavery in Egypt and decades of wandering in the wilderness, the Nation of Israel finds itself on the doorstep of the Promised Land. They’ve arrived at the Jordan River, and their destiny waits on the other side. Their leader Moses has died, and his protégé, Joshua, has been installed as the new man in charge.
In a miraculous scene reminiscent of the earlier parting of the Red Sea (Exodus 14), God speaks to Joshua and tells him the waters of the Jordan will “pile up in a heap”, allowing the Israelites to cross over on dry ground (Joshua 3). In the next chapter of the story, after the entire nation completed the crossing, God instructs Joshua to appoint a leader from each tribe to take up a total of 12 large stones from the middle of the river. These stones were to be put down together at their next campsite, creating a monument of sorts. From verses 6 and 7:
In the future, when your children ask you, “What do these stones mean?” tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord…These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever.
God knows how forgetful we can be when it comes to His provision and blessing, and instructed the Israelites to build this monument designed to help them remember how they were loved and protected.
I know better than to equate the work of CFC with the Israelites’ journey to the Promised Land — that’s absurd. But we have this in common: it’s not hard for us to lose our way from time to time. We can get discouraged. We can presume to take full credit for achievements, rather than acknowledging the love and protection of our God. We have the goal of being used to play a role in transforming lives and our entire city. And yet, we know full well we cannot do this perfectly, and that this is far too large a job for any group of people. We need to reflect and stay true to the mission and vision. We need reminders — stones of remembrance, monuments designed to recalibrate our hearts and point us toward the God whose lead we seek to follow.
That’s why I was so grateful for the chance to record this interview with David Smale on his podcast “Sports Connections”. We recorded a couple months ago, and as I listened to our conversation, I was reminded again of why CFC exists. As David and I discussed the journey God’s had CFC on over the past decade, I was energized and realized that this podcast is something our team can return to when we get discouraged or need to refocus. It is a stone of remembrance that can remind us why we do what we do, and how blessed we are to be called to serve the coaches and families of our city.
Give our podcast interview a listen. And as you travel your journey, take time to create and recognize monuments or markers that can encourage you, pointing you back to your purpose in those moments when you wonder why you do what you do or if you’re making a difference. You are.
Let’s Coach With Purpose…