In January of 2006, I received a phone call from my mother informing me that my dad was in the ICU. He was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis. It was a long road to recovery, but through the strength of the Lord and wonderful medical care, he fully recovered. As a result of his sickness and long rehabilitation, my wife and I invited my parents to move from Ohio to Newnan so that we could assist when needed. Although we weren’t planning on them moving into the same house as us, a friend from our church invited us to look at a house he was selling at 88 Arbor Springs Plantation Drive.
Julie and I (and our three kids) were happy with our house in White Oak, but we made a courtesy drive to Arbor Springs to look through our friend’s home. It didn’t take long for us to fall in love with the house and neighborhood. Within two months, we sold our house and moved into our beautiful new home. My family of five (plus my mom and dad) have made many enjoyable memories over the last 15 and a half years. Arbor Springs has been a wonderful place to live!
Currently, I am the Pastor of Trinity Church and the Head of School at Trinity Christian School. In the last 22 years, the school has grown from 180 to 1,460 students. Recently, Trinity has been highlighted in the news because they brought Coweta County its first football GHSA State Title.
Head Coach Kenny Dallas has been casting a vision that the road to building a championship football program would come through two things: PREPARATION (hard work) and BROTHERHOOD (love). Their goal was to be the hardest working team in the state of Georgia (preparation) and to be the team that loves each other the deepest (brotherhood).
In 2017, Trinity started a Strength and Speed initiative which would be the backbone of the football program. The training program was coined “The Crucible.” Twenty-five boys showed up at a shack called “Andy Market” (our makeshift weight room) at 5:57 AM with the dream of building a championship program. It was a humble beginning. Although TCS has a new stadium and state-of-the-art training facility, the players and coaches understand the foundation of this team was inaugurated without any fanfare, resources, or history – just work ethic and a dream. This past year the Lions had 78 young men make every single “crucible” at 5:57 AM. Yes, champions are built when no one is looking.
In 2017, the Lion football program started the year ranked dead last in the Georgia Independent School Association. Four years later the Lions have 1) finished #1 in Single-A; 2) #8 in the state of Georgia, All Classifications (Max Preps); 3) #69 in the nation (Cal Preps); 4) 20 points away from being the highest-scoring football team in the history of Georgia High School Football, and that was with a first-round in the state playoffs; 5) the AJC has recognized the Lions as the single-A “Team of the Century” in GHSA; and 6) the only undefeated team in the state of Georgia.
Years ago, Michigan quarterback Jim Harbaugh (current coach of the Michigan Wolverines) walked into the office of offensive line coach Jerry Hanlon. The week of their first game, Jim asked, “How do you think our team is going to do, Coach?” Coach Hanlon neglected to look up from the work on his desk and replied, “I don’t know, Jim.” A bit mystified, Jim asked, “What do you mean, you don’t know? We are about to play the University of Miami. Shouldn’t you have an inkling of how we are looking?” Coach Hanlon raised his eyes just above his bifocals and revealed, “Jim, it will take a long while before I know how good this team is. You see, Jim, in another 15 to 20 years you and your teammates are going to be husbands and fathers...Yes, it is only then that I will know if you were a good team or not.”
Although the Trinity football team has received a lot of accolades this year, time will ultimately reveal how good the team really is. You see, at Trinity, our ultimate goal is to raise up godly men and women who will truly love their spouses, children, and neighbors. Preparation and brotherhood are two vital parts of the process.