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Random Thoughts for Random People

The Athlete’s Prayer – A prayer even I can get behind

I have been intending to write a post on my views in religion.  Unfortunately my views are confused.  I have serious questions about faith: mine, other’s and faith in general.  But that is for a future time.

I am personally against public prayer.  Prayer, in my opinion, is a personal phone call between yourself and your Deity.  Why would you want other people listening to your phone call?  That being said, I was reading Tuesday Morning Quarterback today and it included a section on “The Athlete’s Prayer”.  I think it is ridiculous for athletes, especially professional athletes who have reached a pinnacle in their field, to pray to God for victory.  God does not care who wins the game.  That being said, I think this is an appropriate prayer for an athlete and I just had to pass it on.

The Athlete’s Prayer
God (or Adonai or Allah), let me play well but fairly.
Let competition make me strong but never hostile.
In this and in all things, guide me to the virtuous path.
If I know victory, grant me happiness;
If I am denied, keep me from envy.
See me not when I am cheered, but when I bend to help my opponent up.
Seal it in my heart that everyone who takes the field with me becomes my brother.
Remind me that sports are just games.
Teach me something that will matter once the games are over.
And if through athletics I set an example – let it be a good one.

If only more people could find happiness in victory.

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February 7, 2007 - Posted by | Football, JMU, Redskins, Sports, Thoughts on Religion

10 Comments »

  1. I play a Division one sport and before we go out the court our team says a short prayer together. I don’t believe players and teams really pray for what many believe they do. Yes, victory is what we want, but that’s not always what is prayed for. For our team we pray for what leads to that. We pray for no injuries, high energy, trust and faith in each other. We pray for God to watch over the game and let us play to the best of our ability. Pre-game prayers are more of a comforting ritual before the fight. It is something an athlete can control.
    Even athletes at the top of their game need the security of God whether they are full believers or just need security. I’m in the middle, but having faith in something whether it is God or your team is what brings everyone together.
    We’re not all as selfish as many think, especially not when it comes to religion.

    Comment by Petee | October 10, 2008 | Reply

  2. I like hearing this…a real-life account. I was only an athlete at the high school level where seperation of church and state was strictly enforced.

    I have no problem with people (even athletes) thanking god for the benefits found in your life…if you beleive he has something to do with it. I suppose that I should be a little more grateful to have the good things in my life.

    But that isn’t really the point.

    Thank you for your account.

    Comment by m2morgan64 | October 13, 2008 | Reply

  3. happy to hear u angle

    Comment by chinapyel | August 8, 2009 | Reply

  4. I really like this prayer. I was looking for a realistic prayer to give my nephew who will play football for C.W. Post Long Island University this fall. Thank you so much for sharing this prayer!
    I hope you find happiness in whatever you choose to do!

    Comment by Kathy Persch | August 24, 2009 | Reply

  5. madame i really appreciate when i make the prayer .. thxs once again .keep contact with me . ok

    Comment by chinapyel | August 24, 2009 | Reply

  6. I play at the catholic university of america, I was suppose to go D1, long story short I got injured the school let me go. What I’m getting at, is that we use this prayer before every baseball game. Im not even that religous but I just do it to feel good. If you feel good, you play good that’s my motto and it got me a top 25 school D1 scholarship.

    Comment by catholic university | December 12, 2009 | Reply

  7. I would like to have a prayer for all my athlets which are now in preparation very hard training .And for my son who is study in india phd in sport and for my wife mind .

    Comment by chinapyel | December 12, 2009 | Reply

  8. This prayer was found just this week and provided a beautiful start for the opening day at the 37th World Oilman’s Tennis Tournament at the Houston Racquet Club (Houston, TX). We had lost our ‘founder’ during the past year, and we all felt that his mantra was in the words of the prayer. Thanks for sharing.

    Comment by Danny L. Stephens | May 12, 2013 | Reply

  9. Thanks Danny for the comment. As you can see I posted this about 6 years ago (suddenly feeling a bit old). Still pretty far from understanding my own views on faith (though I’m getting there). I’m glad it was useful.

    I have made it a point to notice when players help each other up or hand the ball to the official rather than leave it on the ground, and to point out those actions to my kids. Athletics can bring out such competition and primitive (and sometimes necessary) aggression; I like seeing the better side too. Hearing about an organization ‘founded’ on that “better side” is a real treat.

    Comment by m2morgan64 | May 15, 2013 | Reply

  10. I do not even know the way I finished up here,
    but I believed this submit was great. I don’t understand
    who you are but definitely you’re going to a well-known blogger for those who are not
    already. Cheers!

    Comment by Evie | June 17, 2014 | Reply


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