Pastor’s ponderings

It dawned on me earlier this week why this particular pastor enjoys pickleball so much – because the balls are holy!  (Well, actually, since they are wiffle-type balls, they are holey.)  Anyway, enough of the corny “dad” jokes.  Yet, I do want to talk about this sport once again and its parallels to living a Christian life.  I was recently reading an article which outlined that there are basically four types of pickleball players: The “Banger” is often very confident and can be seen as “a force to be reckoned with” as they smash (or “bang”) the ball with extreme force.  The “Coach” is all about building upon fundamentals and improving everyone’s game through skill development, even if they might be an opponent at the time. The “Dinker” is all about endurance, taking their time to setup and play the right shot for the moment, willing to go the distance as often as needed.  The “Socialite” is more interested in having fun than about the competition; for them it’s all about the relationships, encouraging everyone to be their best. (

            Over my time playing the game, I have certainly seen all of these personality types.  Yet, even more interestingly, I recently realized that we can see each of these personality types in the church today as well.  How often have you seen a “basher” attempt to slam something through and utilize force to ensure a certain ministry takes place, or how often have you seen a Christian try to “bash” someone else with the gospel, utilizing brute force in their evangelism?  We probably seen “coaches” all the time in church, don’t we?  Our pastors, Sunday School and Bible study teachers, and faith leaders are great examples.  And I know for certain that there are plenty of “socialites” out there! After all, who doesn’t enjoy spending time with one another, especially over a fellowship meal?

            Yet, I have to wonder, how many “dinkers” do we have in the church today?  How many willingly slow down and take their time, are strategic in their approach to what needs to be done, sets up the next shot to be taken, and executes it with precision, slowly, methodically enduring the entire time?  This approach is difficult (in pickleball and Christian life) because it takes a lot of time to practice and prepare to play in this way, but the reality is, it’s also the most effective.  In both situations, it’s all about reading the court, understanding the other players, and executing a game that will work in that particular situation, not just bashing to ball about from one side to the other (which more often than not ends up in the net or out of bounds).

            So, perhaps we all need to ponder what type of player are we?  How do we approach our ministry?  Are you a basher, coach, socialite, or dinker?

                                                            Always pondering, 

Pastor Steve

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *