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As basketball season is in full swing it’s our favorite time of the year! When schedules come out it’s like Christmas for us! We map out where we can go to see the most games, teams, coaches, players, and alumni as possible. The early season MTE’s and tournaments allow us to see up to 8 teams or more at one time in one location. We’ve always said we believe in the ministry of presence, of being there, of being seen. Not in a showy sense or to be a spectacle but in being there in person and letting our alumni and friends know we are there for them and go support them. It’s always appreciated that we make the effort to travel and be there for them.

This year kicked off with a game at the Yum Center in Louisville before jumping in the car and driving until 1am and catching a little sleep in Sevierville, TN only to hit the road at 6am to travel on to Myrtle Beach for the Myrtle Beach Invitational. We got to see longtime Sports Reach friend Travis Ford and St Louis, as well as, Ritchie McKay and Liberty, Wichita St, Vermont, Furman, Wyoming, and Coastal Carolina. We connected with ESPN broadcasters Rich Hollenberg and Daymeon Fishback as well. Being there in person also opens up opportunities to meet and connect with coaches, players, referees, team Sports Information Directors, and the media announcers and commentators. We love connecting, meeting knew people, and being able to share devotions and what we do with all of these people. The next morning we traveled two hours south to Charleston, SC for the Charleston Classic which is always a favorite of ours. We got to see coaching friends and alumni with Houston, North Texas, LSU, St John’s, Wake Forest, Dayton, Towson, and Utah. We also got to see Teddy Valentine and John Hampton, two officials who are friends of Sports Reach. We left after the final game and began our drive to Jacksonville, FL to watch North Florida, Maine, Northwestern St, and Presbyterian. NSU’s head coach and a North Florida Asst are longtime friends of Sports Reach.

We had so many other connections at each stop with old friends and new, and with players families. God is so gracious in opening up doors and building relationships just from showing up and being there. Numerous people we saw get our daily devotions we send out and all of them graciously thanked us for sending them. Several coaches even said they often share them with their teams as they’re fitting and applicable to what they’re teaching them in their culture and environments they’re developing.

Relationships are what it’s all about and these trips during basketball season help foster and develop these even deeper.

Plans and excitement for trips in 2024 are well underway and seeds have been planted with all of these people and more about the opportunity to go and use your gifts, talents, and passions to share the gospel worldwide. It’s hard to truly communicate what being there in person really means and the opportunities that come from it, but I’ve tried to share some of those in this article. When you see us out and about and at these games, know a lot of what you’ve just read is a big part of it and most happens behind the scenes.

Please keep us in your prayers as we travel and build relationships and recruit for mission trips. As always, go with us! If you can’t, pray for us, and financially support us as it’s you who helps play a significant part in making it all happen! God’s Glory!

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About Jordan Sok