“Set your minds on what is above, not on what is on the earth.” — Colossians 3:2*
I have spent a lifetime in football, beginning my career at 17 years old with Manchester United. Two years later, I had the privilege of helping Manchester United win the European Cup as the winning goal scorer. It was truly a great honor. From there, I went on to Manchester City, Arsenal and other British and various American teams before becoming a coach and finally, an assistant manager.
Being a coach is a lovely job. I didn’t originally plan to take on that role, but I have really enjoyed it. It requires great enthusiasm and a lot of hard work. I have had the pleasure of coaching at both Manchester United and Manchester City, where I formerly played.
Football has evolved since my days as a player. The Premier League is now seen all over the world and has become a big business. It’s quite exciting, but with all that money comes a lot of pressure and demands on teams. It is easy to let winning and losing become more important than the love of the game. How one deals with winning and losing is what’s important.
My faith helps me keep perspective and reminds me that there are more important things than football and winning. As I deal with pressure, I often find myself praying, “Thy will be done,” and then hand things over to God. I may not get answers right away, but over time, God’s plan becomes more clear.
As a young boy, my family attended church faithfully. Today, I still go to church weekly, and more if time permits. It provides much needed time of tranquility, reflection and prayer. A lot of today’s generation has no religion, and I find that to be very sad. It is comforting to believe in the Almighty God. He provides the perspective and stability needed to deal with life’s ups and downs, as well as the pressure of professional sports.
In Colossians 3:2, the Apostle Paul encourages us to, “Set [our] minds on what is above, not on what is on the Earth.” Paul was repeatedly persecuted and jailed for his faith, yet was able to look past his difficult earthly circumstances to focus on God’s promises.
His words are an encouraging and appropriate reminder that focusing on Christ will give us the strength to deal with the stress and pressure we may experience in life.
Written by Brian Kidd, an assistant coach for Manchester City. He has also coached Manchester United and the England national team. As a player he played for Manchester United, Arsenal, Manchester City and Everton, among others.
* These references come from the Bible, which, includes the essential details on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Bible is divided into books, which are further divided into chapters and verses. For example, John 3:16 refers to the Book of John, the third chapter and sixteenth verse.