Ole Miss Coach Hugh Freeze: “Run toward the battle!”
Ole Miss Head Coach Hugh Freeze returned to Memphis Sunday night. Bellevue Baptist Church in Memphis invited Coach Freeze to speak during its evening service. Church members commented on what a great turnout there was—including many visitors (a majority of whom were probably Rebels).
Freeze, who coached at Briarcrest Christian School in Memphis for 13 years, was noticeably humbled to be given an opportunity to share what is in his heart. His personal walk with his Savior Jesus Christ is of utmost important to Freeze, more important than anything else in his life.
While addressing the congregation, the influential coach delivered a passionate message to his fellow believers:
“What is your IT? Whatever it is you do is not your purpose. It is your platform. How are you using your platform to build and strengthen others?” – Hugh Freeze
The Cookie Lady
Coach Freeze shared the story of the “Cookie Lady,” and said every player, coach and member of his staff knows who this lady is. Each Wednesday, the “Cookie Lady” and her husband bring dozens of fresh, homemade cookies—even Coach Freeze’s favorite, chocolate chip and pecan.
So what was his reason for sharing this story? “The ‘Cookie Lady’ knows her ‘IT,’” Freeze explained. Without fail, every week this lady selflessly serves. She purchases all the ingredients for her cookies with her own money, and has expressed to Freeze how baking is her one thing; it is her “IT.”
Coach Freeze prompted those of us in attendance to consider that if we all did one thing without fail, we would have an incredible sphere of impact and influence. The “Cookie Lady’s” baking helps build up others. Her cookies make others feel good; she is impacting and influencing.
Look to the interests of others
Without a doubt, Coach Freeze knows his scripture and he shared some that are particularly meaningful to him. He recited Philippians 2:4: “Not looking at your own interests but each of you to the interests of others.”
Freeze explained that something as simple as a cookie can be an interest of others:
“As believers in Christ, we have a responsibility to impact and influence. If you are a believer, you should still be in the game, no matter where you are in life and no matter what your age.” – Hugh Freeze
More than the man with a playbook
Coach Freeze is more than just a man with a football playbook. For many of his young athletes, he is an encourager and a mentor through the plays of life. Mentoring is extremely important to Freeze, and he told the crowd how he, himself, is mentored. Without fail, he starts his day in biblical study and conversation with his Friend and Savior. Divine Mentoring has helped Freeze through many trials and triumphs, and it has also given him much-needed guidance when making life decisions.
Freeze encouraged the congregation to remain connected. He noted that being an active Christ follower makes the bulls-eye on himself bigger, but that it does not stop him from fulfilling his “IT.”
Run quickly towards the battle
Another of Coach Freeze’s favorite Bible verses is 1 Samuel 17:48: “As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.”
David ran quickly toward the battle. Coach Freeze made his philosophy clear that Christians should run toward every battle, especially after spending time in the training room with Jesus.
Step out. What is your platform? Fulfill your “IT!”
Rebel Nation is fortunate to have Coach Hugh Freeze at the helm of its football program, and I was blessed to hear him speak Sunday night.
(Feature image courtesy of Bellevue Baptist Church, Memphis)