Cult like Agassi Following in Christian Tennis
by Scott Paschal
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Hey there! This is Scott Paschal.
Thanks for checking in to read this story delving into the facts about the International Christian Tennis Association, ICTA.
ICTA has a worldwide membership in over 1500 cities in 50 countries. Established in 1999, the International Christian Tennis Association has several ministry programs, such as:
*Mission trips to Top Pro Tournaments
*A Christian Tennis Academy for High Performance Juniors and Professional Tennis Players
* & much more...
Each day people from an average of 40+ countries visit Christiantennis.net.
In fact, we commonly have enjoyed over 3500 people visiting Christiantennis.net a week resulting up to 14,000 page views.
Many of our visitors from Turkey, India, Pakistan, Iran, and Syria are not Christian, just curious. Welcome and glad to have you visit.
The International Christian Tennis Association has one purpose... to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
If you would like to know more about Jesus and how you can receive your free gift of Salvation, please call or email me at anytime. You are important to me.
I am no one famous or fancy, just a simple preacher and tennis coach. But, I know my Jesus and I know He loves you.
Man, this has been another incredible day!
I started off the day as a special guest on an international radio show based in Australia. I've done this show for about 3 years.
I'm the "tennis expert" and we talk pro tennis. The station plays secular music, yet is Christian owned and weaves Christian messages into the programing throughout the day.
My little 30 minute show is broadcast to millions throughout the week on the 2nd most powerful short wave radio tower in the Southern Hemisphere... from Australia to India to China & more....
For nearly 3 years I've enjoyed working with this terrific radio ministry share the Gospel. It's been a positive experience for the growth of International Christian Tennis Association, too!
After the show, I spent some time developing my new company, Scott Paschal's Tennis Tour Co. I have a dream to take hundreds of ICTA members with me to Grand Slam tournaments.
Did you know over 1500 ICTA members want to go with me to the US Open? Can you imagine bringing that many Christians to one event!?
I'm planning to start off small with a little tour to the Pacific Life Open and the Sony Ericson Open (Nasdaq)... maybe 20 to 30 ICTA members... and see how it goes. I'm planning a new web site just for Scott Paschal's Tennis Tour Company, so stay tuned!
After my radio show and some office work, we headed out to the tennis courts and tore up some tennis balls!
And let me tell you something... our ICTA Women's Pro Team's high performance training today here in beautiful Palm Coast, Florida was awesome! I mean AWESOME!
These girls work hard! This afternoon, these world-class Christian tennis missionaries pounded the tennis ball for hours. I pushed them to the limit with high peformance drills and competition.You should have seen how hard and smart Rachel Snelen and Melody Snelen hit the ball today. Wow, have these two Christian tennis missionaries come a long way! All of my students worked so hard!!
The radio was cranked up, tennis balls are being ripped back and forth non-stop, the sun was beating down on them in the middle of the afternoon... and the girls have these big grins on their faces. Amazing.
I have the hardest working girls in Florida. I'm so proud of this group. Not only are they willing to work hard, they also have a great time together.
These gals are bonded and have a purpose.
The Bible says, "Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in Him; and He shall bring it to pass." Psalm 37:5
These ladies certainly see a purpose with their lives. God is preparing to send them internationally to earn or improve their WTA rankings while sowing seed of the Gospel! What a purpose!
Yet, how rare compared to the lack of a purpose most kids feel. Not just the kids at the mega tennis academies chasing unrealistic dreams for $1100 a week, but most kids worldwide.
Most kids today don't have a reason for much of anything they do. They tend to live one day to the next without a sense of direction or reason for living. The verse above helps to reach out to us to make a commitment. Commit your life to following God.
Pretty simple idea when you think about it.
Then, it says to trust Him.
For a lot of kids today, that's hard. Why?
'Cause Mom and Dad are bad examples.
What!? How can I say that? Well, look at the examples of most parents today. More divorces than ever, more alcoholics, addictions to prescription drugs, mental and physical abuse... the list goes on and on....
But, wait! You say you do none of those things! Plus, you attend church most Sundays. Certainly, I can't be talking to you, right!? Nope. Most likely I am still talking directly to you.
You see, Jesus knows what He needs for His people to do. He understands our trials to come. So He gives us His commands... you know, those things He tells us to do. See if you can get your racquet on this one...
"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment."-Mark 12:30
I would venture to say you do not do this.
Maybe, instead of God, you love your children with all you have. Maybe your career. I don't know. But, most likely something or somethings take the place of where all of your love should go... God.
Kids have a hard time figuring out this difficult world we live in because lots of Moms and Dads are so "Baby Boomer" or "Generation X" self-centered. The me-centered needs, wants and desires of the folks are #1.
God might be #2 or #3, which might seem pretty high up on the list... but, it's not. This isn't a Christmas shopping list. When our kids today see their parents in love with God, kids will begin to see their purpose for living.
So, now that I have you attention let's add something and bring everything together!
Take a look at this... And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)
Jesus is talking to you. Right here, right now. Are you spreading the Gospel? What is your life?
What would happen to your kids if you loved God with all you are? Then, you went out into the world and told everyone you could?
What if 100,000 people tomorrow took the day off work to focus on their love of God, then the next day each person told 100 people about their love of God, explained how to get to Heaven, and recommended a Bible-based local church?
I know what would happen... our kids would begin to see a purpose for life and a lot of good things would happen globally.
But, isn't this an article about Andre Agassi? Sure, but I'm not interested in telling you about Andre the tennis player.
Like everyone else, I'm going to miss him on court. I want to tell you about a different Andre Agassi...
After his retirement a few days ago, Andre began doing something he hadn't done before!
Andre Agassi began bringing the name of God into his statements. This was huge. In fact, our web site hit-counter skyrocketed and people worldwide began reading all throughout the International Christian Tennis Association's web site.
From the press statements Agassi made, people worldwide found their way to ICTA to see if he was a Christian. The answer is yes. Andre Agassi will spend eternity in Heaven. His Lord and Savior is Jesus Christ.
He did not tell me this personally. I have never spoken to him about his faith in Jesus Christ. Yet, I know those who have.
Wish Andre could have done this about 21 years ago. But, as was his Dad's example, he didn't. Even after accepting Christ in '88, still Andre was quiet. Not now.
Andre Agassi is making the world a better place by sharing his Christian example and witness. People will respect him and want to know what he knows.
There is no telling how many people will come to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior simply from the positive, Godly example Agassi displayed in his final interview as a professional tennis player.
Agassi waited until he had his biggest international audience of his career. What motivated him? A better world for his children? I don't know.
Maybe it had something to do with the popularity of my Rafael Nadal article where I've personally challenged Rafa. In it, I also challenged Andre. If you haven't read it, go to www.christiantennis.net and scroll down till you see Rafa, then click on the pic.
Whatever his motivation, I'm glad Agassi is growing more mature as a Christian man.
I'm glad Andre Agassi is standing up, even if these are just tiny baby steps for him. Because a guy like Andre can reach tens of millions worldwide.
This is happening at such an important time is the world today. I am proud of his efforts for something more, something bigger than tennis.
That said, I'm incredibly proud of our ICTA Women's Pro Team! I can't say enough how much of a blessing these young ladies have been.
Caring, hard working, loving, kind, generous, thoughful... honestly, I've never had students such as these before. I've had one or two here and there. But never a whole house full of them!
These kids know God loves them. Their parents have done a really great job as examples. Each of my players know they are loved by God.
These gals know God is preparing them for a life of purpose. And I'm so honored to be a part of the story God has written for their lives. It's exciting to be here for me and I am so blessed as a coach.
"I will praise Thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify Thy name for evermore." Psalm 86:12
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Coach Scotty, Hello. I love to watch tennis, and I have also enjoyed watching Andre Agassi mature over the years, and been intrigued to watch a human being actually become more humble as his fame and success increased. Truly, his example is a measure of true success. The answer to your question, what would I do if money were not a limiting factor? At first I started going through lists of what I thought would be the best things to accomplish, but realized they all actually boiled down to the same goal. What would I do? As it turns out, I realized this is actually easy to answer. I would quit my job and spend most of those 8 to 12 hours a day and then some instead doing whatever God called me to do, trusting Him to take care of my needs, as I served those He led me to. I guess if you really think about it, if someone has unlimited faith, they probably wouldn’t need unlimited funds.
amy, scott paschal here again... i totally agree with you about agassi becoming more humble. wow has he undergone a transformation. the same type of thing happened to me. i've learned how little i actually know and i work daily to realize god is developing this christian tennis ministry, not scott paschal. two of our christian tennis missionaries, rachel and melody snelen, deal with wta pro players and their coaches. many of these people are quite arrogant... and 7 of 10 are not christian. it is so tremendously gratifying when our missionaries lead someone to christ. the special snelen twins are really rare in this world. and yes, i agree with your thoughts on faith. god has all the money you need. he is just waiting until you have a willing heart. even today, i was contacted by a man who has asked me to assisit him in building a christian sports ministry. his church of over 2000 people is right in the heartland of america. we have some strong ministry friends in common and it is so awesome to see god working when we agree to step out in faith with him.
Coach Paschal, I enjoyed reading more in depth about the ICTA Christian Tennis ministry and the commitment of your students. I like the way you challenge others to be more committed, especially when the prize at stake is the souls of loved ones or maybe even our own! I hope to see you continue to post encouraging articles that can help challenge us as Christians to do more that just be Christians, as well as help others find a pathway to God's Grace.
Hi there Amy! One of my favorite roles God has for my life is Coach Paschal. Business people know me as Scott Paschal, my 87 year old grampa calls me Scotty, and my students at my Christian Tennis and Missionary Academy call me Coach Scotty! Yes, I do challenge others to be more committed in their lives. I was really excited to see Andre Agassi share his faith a bit after his last the US Open. What would you do if God gave you the whole world as your stage to tell others about Him? If money were no option, what would you do for Him? Let me know if/when you would like to. I'm curious to discover your thoughts! God bless, Scott Paschal... Christian tennis nut:) Coach Paschal, I enjoyed reading more in depth about the ICTA Christian Tennis ministry and the commitment of your students. I like the way you challenge others to be more committed, especially when the prize at stake is the souls of loved ones or maybe even our own! I hope to see you continue to post encouraging articles that can help challenge us as Christians to do more that just be Christians, as well as help others find a pathway to God's Grace.
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