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Investing In The Future

On April 25, 1993, I was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts.  I was the 92nd selection.

Eventually I went on to play six seasons in the National Football League (Colts 1993-1997; Panthers 1998).

When I’m asked what was it like to play in the NFL, I often say, ”Have you ever heard of Coach Kyle, Coach Rodriguez, Coach Took, Coach Hardeman, Coach Sullivan, and Coach Rutledge?”

These coaches were men that God strategically placed in my life, from elementary school to high school, and who invested in me.  

My life is built on their sweat investment into me.

I made it to the NFL because fifth-grade Coach Kyle encouraged me during PE.

I made it to the NFL because Coach Rodriguez and Coach Took encouraged me in middle school.

The first time I ever thought about getting a college scholarship for football was when, in 8th grade, Coach Took told my mom, “If Dewey continues to work hard, one day he could earn a football scholarship.”

I made it to the NFL because Coach Hardeman gave me rides home from football practice when I was a freshman in high school.  He would buy me dinner and talk to me about life.

I made it to the NFL because Coach Sullivan and Coach Rutledge taught me more than football at Converse Judson High School.

You see, I made it to the NFL because of the investment that the older generation made into me.  

My future was shaped by their intentional sweat investment in me.

The same way these men of an older generation invested in me is the same way the Church should invest in the younger generation.

This is why at Transformation Church (TC), we are multi-generational. 

The teens at TC are not the church of tomorrow; they are the church of now. 

Therefore, they worship on the weekend with adults, are in small groups with adults, and serve in ministries with adults.  They have Transformation Groups led by adults on Sunday night.

Why are we multi-generational?

Because it is the privilege and responsibility of the older generation to make a sweat investment in the younger generation.  

Their future and our future is happening now because of our investment in them today.

Check out my sermon, “It Takes Ancient Transformative Wisdom”, click here and for study guide click here.”

Who are you making an intentional sweat investment?  Who are people who made an intentional sweat investment in you?

Marinate on that,

Pastor Derwin

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Derwin L. Gray is the founding and Lead Pastor of Transformation Church (www.tc521.org), a multi-ethnic, multi-generational, mission-shaped community in Indian Land, South Carolina, just south of Charlotte, North Carolina. Transformation Church was recognized as one of the 15 fastest growing churches in America for 2010 by Outreach Magazine. Gray is the author of "Limitless Life: You Are More Than Your Past When God Holds Your Future" and is a highly sought-after communicator. Connect with Derwin on twitter @Derwinlgray.