Within a few days, my family and I will once again board The Buckeye Cruise for Cancer which raises millions of dollars for The James Cancer Hospital and The Solove Cancer Research Center. My initial connection with the cruise began with me organizing a group of fellow Ohio State Alumni Cheerleaders to perform some pep rallies on the first cruise. Although I no longer participate with the Alumni squad on the ship, I remain active in fundraising onboard and throughout the year.
I miss the excitement of being a cheerleader at OSU. I miss being able to flip around, building insane pyramids, holding my cheerleading partner above my head as she contorts herself in various precarious positions, and launching girls higher than should be legal into the air.
One such skill we excelled at was called a “Basket-Toss.” Several of us burley men would stand in a circle, joining our arms together by grabbing one another’s wrists, forming a make-shift platform. The no-bigger-than-a-peanut girl would step onto this “basket”, and we would launch her close to 20 feet into the air, as she completed flips and twists throughout. Truly spectacular!
Recently, a video has been circulating around of a college mascot being launched by a group of cheerleaders in a similar fashion to how we used to launch the girls. The main difference being that instead of launching the girl straight up and then catching her as she falls, this group launched the mascot horizontally. In fact, they launched him from the 3-point line on a basketball court all the way to the basket for a monster slam dunk! Boom! (Google BYU Mascot Slam Dunk to see it.)
Besides bringing back lots of memories about my cheerleading days, I thought of how much this illustrates how I hope to see our churches operate – – Launching people into their ministries! Part of our “Mission” as spelled-out in our Identity Statement at Life Church, is to Disciple and Equip our members in accomplishing whatever it is God is calling them to do. Ephesians 4:12-14 encourages us as Pastors & Leaders to “equip the saints for the work of ministry, (which is each of you, who have chosen to follow Jesus), so that the body of Christ may be built up, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”
As leaders, we’re doing all we can to circle up and combine our strength, creating a launching pad for those willing to step in and go for it. We’re locked and loaded ready to help; the question is – – Are you willing to be launched?