It’s another Friday evening; the sun is setting leaving that photogenic orange glow on the well-used basketball court. Muscles work hard, breath is heavy, and eyes are focussed on the ball bouncing. Young people of varied age, skill and experience absorbed in the game. Young guys reaching the end of their teenage years who have played for years, exemplifying a positive attitude of teamwork and hard work, mentoring the enthusiastic younger players.
Luc, our team leader, has been coaching basketball for years. He has spent many hours on the court with young players who have attended for weeks, months or years. He has been able to invest in their lives off the court, celebrating joys and lamenting hardships. I’ve had the privilege of connecting with these guys too. They have taught me a lot about basketball (I’ve definitely improved!) and about life in Sosh. I’ve been able to encourage them in their schoolwork, to listen to their life stories, and hopefully convey God’s love to them.
The basketball court is a safe place for each person who attends. No matter what is going on in their lives, they are able to come and focus together on that bouncing ball. They know that here are people that care about them and who value them for who they are. For a couple of hours they can escape any issues or work through them by being with friends.
It’s getting dark, the game is coming to an end, legs are fatigued, the focus is drifting but there are smiles on the faces as each person focuses on the bouncing ball.
This is the second post in our ‘tools of the trade’ series – stories of the objects weaved into our life in Sosh. The previous post in the series was ‘Peeling, chopping, nourishing together‘.