Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 1 Peter 4:10 (NIV) Tuesday, October 20th, I had the pleasure of having a Facebook LIVE conversation with Coach John Kingery, a man who has taken 1 Peter 4:10 to heart – and then some.
I write and talk at length about using our gifts, skills and hobbies to serve God and others. To do so is living beyond ourselves and reaching into the heart of another to affect them in a positive way – in a Jesus-with-skin-on kind of way – that’s unique to our knowledge, ability and experiences.
1 Peter 4:10 declares as we use our gifts to serve others we are being faithful stewards of God’s grace that shows up in various forms in our lives. The gifts and talents with which we have been entrusted are given to us – not for ourselves alone – but to help someone else know Jesus. The hobbies that draw our interest can be much more than entertainment and relaxation for our own scattered and frazzled minds and bodies They are opportunities to connect with someone else – whether it’s around a quilting frame, sitting in a fishing boat, traipsing through the outdoors hunting birds or Bigfoot or on a basketball court or golf course. God’s plan for us is to use what He has given us to serve others and share the love of Jesus.
I was reminded of that during the hour and a half I spent with Coach Kingery during my visit. If you watched that LIVE video conversation, you heard about the way Coach is serving the charity Curing Kids Cancer. (About that sideways video… I have no clue but it doesn’t last forever… just hang in there) We’ll come back to Coach’s involvement with the the charity in a moment. But first I want to share with you some of what you didn’t hear…
When I pulled into Coach’s driveway I was met by his infectious smile and the hug of a teacher seeing a Drivers Ed Student from 30+ years ago. (I didn’t play basketball for Coach Kingery. It was better for both of us that way. I saved myself the humiliation and him the frustration – you’re welcome, Coach.)
As we walked through the door, Coach welcomed me into the home he and his sweet wife Peggy designed years earlier. Peggy’s touch is indelibly imprinted in the home where many memories of cherished love have been shared between them. Coach shared some of those memories with me as he spoke of their family, their fondness of garage-ealing, traveling and life before Peggy was diagnosed with cancer. That diagnosis would change their lives forever as Peggy passed away bravely fighting the terrible disease.
Coach shared with me how the children Peggy saw in their own battle with cancer during their trips to MD Anderson would move her to the core as she thought about the struggles they faced in their little bodies and the uncertainty of their futures.
Cancer is a battle many lose, unfortunately. Yet this monstrous disease does not overtake everyone. Many people who have been diagnosed with various forms of cancer have successfully beaten the disease and stood with hearts full of thanks to God and the medical profession as they ring the bell signifying their triumph after a hard fought battle.
We give thanks to God with every reverberation of the cancer-free bell. We also give thanks to those in the medical field who work tirelessly to bring their expertise to the patients they treat. And we give thanks to those who are committed to tedious research to develop treatments and cures for cancer.
It’s not only those on the frontlines trying to find a cure and help others win the fight against cancer for whom we have great appreciation. We also owe much gratitude to people like Coach John Kingery who champion the cause and give of their time, money and talent to raise funds for research.
CoachKingery serves in fundraising for Curing Kids Cancer, a charity whose mission is “Finding cures for childhood cancers in our lifetime by funding innovative treatments and research.” Please check out their website by clicking on their name above for more information. They have made it easy for everyone to be a part of the research for a cure by donating in various ways. You will be inspired and encouraged by the progress they are making through their efforts. Go ahead – check’em out!
Along with the work Curing Kids Cancer is doing, what is interesting to me is how Coach got involved serving through fundraising for this charity. (Watch the video to hear his story.) Coach Kingery is raising funds to change the lives of children through cancer research because of a hobby – golf.
Levi Mcmellian, a student where John coached in Seiling, and businessman as well as Co-Founder of CFO4Life, was hosting a golf tournament in Texas to raise money for Curing Kids Cancer. This year’s golf tournament will take place September 30th and will raise $120,000-$130,000 for Curing Kids Cancer. Coach played in a previous golf tournament. Think about it. It was through his hobby of golf, Coach was introduced to the charity. It was his love for people and his obedience to serve God in the way God leads that compelled him to step up and say, “I want to help.” How awesome is that?!
It is good for us to notice the various ways God uses people to serve in the various forms of grace God gives through gifts and talents.
- Basketball players
- this list is more extensive than we even have space for…
But what I want us to see is the connection between every person using their God-given gifts, talents, abilities and yes, even hobbies, to make an impact.
Think you can’t make a difference?
Years ago when Coach swung his first golf club he had no idea his love for the game would be the connection that would enable him to use his motivating personality and inspiring stories to raise money for research that has the potential to improve a child’s life and change his or her future!
God will use what you already possess to make a difference in this world. Coach Kingery’s gifts, talents and experiences are being used to raise funds for a worthy charity. They’re also being used to share Jesus with inmates through jail ministry and they’re being used as he inspires others with his passion for life and love for God and people. He’s just one man. But he’s one man making a difference through the life God has given him.
Everyone can make a difference because everyone has something to give. Everyone has something to offer others. What is that for you? Maybe you know. Maybe you don’t. If you know… do something with it. If you are… keep at it, friend! If you don’t know… ask God. He will tell you. He wants to tell you. He wants to use you to make a difference. Don’t compare your difference with anyone else’s difference. Just use what God has given you and go make a difference in your world.
Somebody would love to hear what you have to say. Somebody would love to be your friend. Somebody would love for you to share your gifts, talents and experiences with them. Ask God to put those people in your path. And when He does… “Use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” 1 Peter 4:10
Make a difference, friend. Make a difference.
Don’t forget Tuesday @ 8:00 p.m. (CST) to join our What Did God Say? Facebook LIVE Conversation! For the blog post introducing this article click here. Also join me on Facebook LIVE Monday – Friday @ 7:30 a.m. for Inspiration On-the-Go – a 10-15 min inspirational throughs from scripture.