Waking up to find a large Ford Transit van emblazoned with the Nomad logo in our driveway means only one thing: Beth is home. For those readers who don’t know Beth is our daughter. As the only girl in the family growing up with four brothers Beth quickly gained a love of football (soccer). While in junior school Beth played in the boys’ team, and in her final year received an award for her contribution to sport at the school. In her teenage years Beth played first for a girls’ team and then for a ladies’ team. There are many medals from league and cup wins in Beth’s bedroom.So what should a football-playing girl who just happens to be a Christian do with her life? Football led Beth to Youth for Christ (YFC). YFC run a gap year programme for volunteers, which includes the opportunity to be part of a touring cage football team called Nomad.
Beth has been a volunteer with Nomad for the last two years. I don’t have the statistics for the current academic year, but the statistics for last year are in a previous blog post (click here). Now I would have thought two years on the road would have been plenty, but apparently not because at the end of the summer Beth will become team leader with Nomad. This is a staff position with YFC and a huge responsibility for a twenty-year old. Am I blessed? You bet!
But it is not just me that is blessed by Nomad. For the last week they have been based at our church. Beth and two of the team stayed with us, while the two others stayed with other folk in church. During the week they spent three days working with young people in Beth’s old secondary school, and a day with the football cage in the centre of Hereford. They also worked with three different groups of young people in the evenings. This morning in church the team members: George, Beth, Joel, Oscar and James, shared testimony of the last year. The contact they have had with young people through the football cage is incredible. But as James told us – it isn’t just about football, it is about sharing what is most important to them with young people around the UK. What could that be? Their faith in, and relationship with Jesus Christ. For Nomad this makes life on the road, the long days travelling, staying in host homes, etc., all worthwhile.But as Nomad shared in church this morning they put us all to shame. What do Nomad do with their faith? They take it on the road and around the country and talk to other young people about Jesus. What do most of us do with our faith? We take it to church every Sunday. Big deal!
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!” (Romans 10:13-15 NLT)