A higher goal
Head Men’s Soccer Coach Todd Beall took his love of soccer to a new level this summer.
Beall always enjoys summertime because of the soccer camps and the approach of a new round of competition in the fall, but this year was unique. Beall was asked to be the director of away camps for the Charlotte Eagles, a men's professional soccer team in Charlotte, North Carolina, that plays in the Second Division of the United Soccer Leagues (USL) pro soccer. Working with thousands of boys and girls each year, the Eagles are a division of Missionary Athletes International, a nonprofit Christian sports ministry serving worldwide since 1983.
“Directing with the Eagles was an unforgettable experience,” Beall says. “The coaches on staff take seriously their responsibility as role models. Hundreds of kids came to a better understanding of their walk with Christ, and many made first-time decisions to accept Jesus into their lives.”
The Eagles’ goal is that players improve their skills and knowledge of the game in a positive, motivating environment while at the same time openly sharing the Gospel through devotions, skits and Bible time. After only three weeks, 21 kids made decisions to follow Christ.
“It is awesome to see what God is doing here on campus, but also in other areas around the United States and internationally,” Beall says. “I have had the amazing opportunity to use the game of soccer and to share the Gospel in places like England, Scotland, Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Kids are always initially drawn to the game of soccer, but the most important thing that we teach them there is the truth about Jesus Christ.”
That higher goal informs Geneva’s varsity soccer programs too, Beall notes.
“Our program’s philosophy is based on Romans 12:1-3: ‘In view of God’s mercy, offer your body as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God,’” Beall says. “Our desire is that we worship and glorify God both on and off the field, no matter what the circumstances.”