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Prayers for Muamba

Mar 17, 2012

As a chaplain in professional sport, it is so disturbing to see athletes injured, and especially when one collapses or even suffers death in the midst of competition. Saturday’s incident where Fabrice Muamba of the Bolton Wanderers of the EPL (English Premier League) collapsed and suffered a heart attack during an FA Cup match, was one of those shaking moments for all – players, coaches, officials, and fans to see. As I reflect on the trauma (the match was abandoned) caused, I am reminded of the fragility of life and how much more pronounced that tenuous space feels when we watch one of the best fall – these are the ones who are in the prime of life, the peak of physical performance and conditioning – if they fall, then the hope that we often put in our physical fitness seems that much more diminishing and fleeting.

Perhaps, the most traumatic injury I have witnessed in my times as a chaplain was Steve Zakuani’s injury in 2011. Climbing into the ambulance to pray briefly with him before heading to the hospital, I could see the pain in his eyes and the shock – it took more time, but the implications for his career, his future – all of this was in jeopardy and doubt. And to consider Muamba’s collapse – his life was on the line – there was much more at stake!

These are times when Christian people need to pray – pray for the chaplains who work with these teams; pray for the the players, their families and loved ones as their world is turned upside down and their faith is tried and tested.

Please lift Phil Mason (pictured left), the chaplain for Bolton, up in your prayers. Pray that God would use him to speak into Muamba’s life, his family, and the rest of the team, coaches, and fans. Pray for Muamba – for his recovery, for his health, and for his strength.

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