Chapel Talk: Training to Take Up Our Crosses
Recently, Stuart Cash (known to our kids as Coach Cash) visited the secondary campus and shared a great message with our students during chapel. As a former teacher and coach at CAC, founder of Mustang Missions, and supportive parent of three current CAC students, Coach Cash knows CAC well. His message was one of encouragement, but it also challenged our students as Christian disciples. I asked Coach Cash to share his message with “The Stang” in hopes that our parents will be encouraged and challenged as well.
“I am very proud to call myself a Mustang! I wear the purple and gold with pride. CAC is a place where you can grow, where you are loved by your teachers, and a place where you are challenged on a daily basis to be your best. Just look at our recent school history – 19 State Championships since 2001; hundreds of Conference Championships; an average score of 24.4 on the ACT; 25 National Merit Scholars since 2006, 94% of our students attending college after graduation; and 77% of our students receiving scholarships to college. And we could go on and on about all of the awards that you have received in choir, drama, art and band.
It is very impressive! But why do you think this is the case? It’s because you put in the time. You work hard. You spend hours in the weight room, conditioning on the track, studying for exams, and practicing for upcoming competitions. The football team doesn’t just show up to a game one October night and win by accident. The choir doesn’t just wake up one morning and say, “Hey, let’s sing in unison for a large crowd tonight.” The cheerleaders don’t just walk out onto the gym floor at a pep rally and decide to throw somebody up in the air (even though that would be very interesting if they did). The results people see during a pep rally, a choir concert, a drama production or a wrestling match aren’t by accident. Parents, classmates, and supporters are witnessing the effects of many weeks, months and years of hard work and dedication. Being as successful as you have been hasn’t come by accident but by training. The trophies that you see when you walk into our gym are the result of your preparation, dedication and hard work.
To that end, what about your Spiritual life? How hard have you been training yourself in this arena? Just as athletes must train their bodies and minds in their sports in order to be successful, so too Christians must train themselves in the Word and in prayer in order to live out the purpose God has set for them. A Christian can’t just wake up one morning and win the battles, struggles and temptations of the day if they hadn’t been preparing for them. Scripture tells us in 1 Peter 5:8, “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” All of us have temptations and struggles. And to be honest, some of us in this auditorium today are losing those battles. We are falling into our temptations and giving in to our struggles. Why? Maybe because we haven’t been training ourselves.
When was the last time that you “went into your room, closed the door and prayed to your Father, who is unseen?” When was the last time that you were sharpened and directed by the Scriptures? When was the last time that you got away from your busy schedule, away from all of the noise and distractions, even your phone (gasp!), just to sit quietly with God?
Why are some of us losing our daily battles? I believe it is because we hadn’t been preparing ourselves to win those battles. As the Apostle Paul says it 1 Corinthians 9:24, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.” If we spend countless hours training to be successful in a sport or fine art, yet aren’t training ourselves to be the best follower of Christ we can be, aren’t we missing the point? In the long run, what have we really accomplished? Does this mean that we have to be perfect? Nope! Does it mean that we will never make any mistakes? Nope! But we MUST train to the best of our ability and be prepared to “take up our cross daily to follow Him.”
May we continue to use the talents that God has given us to glorify Him and achieve all of our earthly goals, but never lose sight of the ultimate goal!”
– Stuart Cash
I’d like to personally invite any of our parents to come join us for chapel someday. Daily chapel is one of the truly unique things that sets CAC apart, and adds to this positive environment. We’d love for our parents to be blessed as well.