Each year, Uncommon Sports Group is able to fund a trip to Passion Conference in Atlanta, GA, for a group of our members. This year, we sent seven USG members to Passion 2023 at State Farm Arena. The goal of sending a group to Passion each year is to provide an opportunity for our members to step away from the busyness of an athletics schedule to rest in the Lord in worship, exhortation, and prayer.
Dawit Cronin, a USG member and Sports Management student at Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, was able to join us at Passion earlier this month. Below is a testimonial of Dawit's experience at Passion Conference 2023 with USG!
"My experience at Passion was amazing and it impacted me in several ways. Even before the conference started, I was super grateful to USG for booking our flights and having an Airbnb ready for us. This showed me that they wanted us to have a safe place to rest and reset as we come back and forth from passion. This environment also created a space where the guys can relax and fellowship. For example, one of the nights, we made pancakes and hung out after the conference. This allowed time for us to talk and get to know each other better. Moving on from where we stayed, that conference overall was amazing. Each speaker brought the word in a way that impacted me. The worship was personal and touching, and it created an environment where the presence of God was there. I really enjoyed Passion City's worship music because all their songs seemed to always have Jesus in the center of them. I know that all worship songs are supposed to be like that, but there was something about their songs. It was so Christ-centered and they never brought attention to themselves when they worshiped. This impacted me so much because I don't always have Christ at the center of my life. The worship overall was impactful and was for sure one of my favorite parts of the conference and thought to be more Christ-centered.
Even though the worship was amazing, there were also a lot of amazing pastors that brought the word. One theme that seemed to be present in all of the messages is the idea of going to Jesus when life hits you rather than returning to the word. This theme seemed to hit me hard throughout the messages. Throughout the messages, I kept turning to John 4, which is the passage when Jesus talked to the Samaritan woman. The passage impacted me a lot because Jesus knew what was going on in her life, and he told her to stop returning to her sins and start to drink the water that God provides because it will quench her thirst. I turned to this passage after the first night because I felt like it was something that was going to be important throughout the conference. The idea of being grounded in God's word and presence when life tempts you is so important because it's how we grow our faith and relationship with God. Each message, in a way, added to my understanding this passage in a better way. Even though the speakers did not talk about this passage, they added a bit of wisdom to understand the passage in a better way. I was super grateful for all the messages that were taught, and it really did impact me to have a firmer stance in my relationship with God. This conference was amazing, and it truly impacted my heart and the way I thought about my relationship with God.
I just want to say thank you to Mikey and Noah, and the Uncommon Sports Group staff for giving us this opportunity. Without your leadership, this trip would not have been possible, and I am grateful for you guys."
Uncommon Sports Group is committed to coming alongside young professionals in the sport industry, like Dawit, who desire to grow in their relationship with Christ. We are amazed at the many ways God worked in the hearts and minds of our group at Passion Conference 2023!
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