“Leave it all on the field, leave it all on the court.” I heard words like this from my coaches when I was growing up so often that many years later as I write these words I hear their voices in my head.
“Be all you can be” the famous U.S. Army slogan is an offshoot and it is said that the slogan remade the Army.
Even authors have a similar challenge: Annie Dillard wrote, “One of the few things I know about writing is this: Spend it all, shoot it, play it, lose it, all, right away, every time.”
Yet, when we approach life we here different messages. We tell our children to be cautious, “don’t give up your day job” even when there is a different dream to be pursued, and “don’t jump right in, until you get your toes wet and test the waters.”
I think when it comes to our spiritual lives we are even more cautious. Can you imagine a preacher saying from the pulpit, “I want you to leave it all in church today. Sing at the top of your lungs, pray spontaneously and loudly, and pour out your gratitude and thanksgiving until every emotion is spent.” Every now and then I used to go to church with my grandmother’s housekeeper, Fanny Taylor. Her people knew how to leave it all in church, and I believe they were the better for it.
I usually attend church where one can quietly slip in the back, and slip back out after communion. Suzy once called the church I was attending “an introvert’s paradise.” But, there is a little bit of me that still hears my coach’s words saying, “Hubbell leave it all out there, in church, in your community, and in life.”
How about you?