As an Athlete 4 Faith it is my humble opinion that you should first know what it is to have it. I can only speak as a Christian, as that is what I identify as and in doing so I learned from seeking the truths that are within me. God provides these truths as he guides each of us on a path. From where we start to where we shall one day end.
Christians at one point where a minority, I myself am a minority and so still feel that my understanding has developed from my life as a gay black male athlete and administrator. I see that for hundreds of years my faith was attacked and persecuted against just as people in my demographic are today, that is until they were able to spread the word and then others joined. Today with the work of people like Athlete Ally a minority group is able to speard its message.
The one teaching that I relate to this is that Gods love is perfect love. This love is a love that we should honor and cherish in our daily lives. When others try to do us harm we remember this love and it is able to get us through the hard games and the workouts. It gets us through the verbal abuse and the negative ideas of people around us.
When others do us harm we do not independently try and do the same back, the laws of man are set so that we can maintain the faith we have in one another so that our love as Christians can carry on. We shall not seek revenge instead we forgive although we may never forget so that the same mistake is not made.
God gave his only son to wash the sins of the world away and in doing so offered us a way into eternal life. No matter the pain on earth or the hurt he was sent to save us. Although all may not enter his kingdom we his faithful are to show his Love and Mercy here on his earth.
Gods word was did not say hate the sinners next to you or to condemn them for a faith that is diffrent than yours. His words are to Love and honor thy neighbors as if they were your brother and your sister.
These are the truths as I have come to understand them and these to me are ways to live a more perfect life. In wrestling I learned something many years ago from top level referees.
“A book is a guide similar to the bible and the constitution. Although we may think these are final words they can be changed on paper at any point and so we simply use it as a guide to help us along the journey.”
Look into your heart and find your truths and the faith that will bring you to that truth. Those will become your convictions.
Akil S Patterson
Director of Programs
Athlete Ally Advisory Board member
Greco Roman world class athlete
LGBTQ National leader
Christian man of Faith