Lessons on Faith Through Football
An NFL media producer shares his passion for faith, how it relates to football, and the lessons he has learned while implementing the same strategies.
Love, Living With, Seeing Life, Speaking, Living, Dreaming, Working, Creating
STORIES WITH PURPOSE
San Francisco Bay Area
Marcus Padilla: The moment we are born, we enter this game of life. This game of life is a lot like football.[On-Screen Text Graphics]
Faith & Football
Marcus: You have to tackle your problems, block your fears and score points when you get that opportunity.
That opportunity came to me ten years ago, when God gave me a very special gift in life. And that is to work for a professional football team right here in the Bay Area.
I was born and raised in a small city called Stockton, California. My father, who is a huge football fan, as a child he would take me to football games every year, and my love for the game grew because of him. Originally, I wanted to follow my father’s footsteps into a career in pharmacy, but deep inside I had that passion for video production — I wanted to tell stories.
In 2008, I graduated from the University of the Pacific. During that time, I was going through a lot in my life: heartbreak, death in the family, struggling to find a job after college. I wanted to work after college already. I couldn’t find that.
What I did is go to career fairs, one after the other. There was one booth, in that corner over there. It was, like, the most popular booth. When I asked the guy, “Sir, do you have any openings for any video production at your team?” And he said, “Unfortunately not. We only have ticket sales.” Deep inside, I got more angry, you know. And so, I just said, “Sir, thank you so much. Here’s my resume. Here’s my resume. If there (are) any openings, please let me know. Please give me a call.”
And so, during that time, during that job search, I prayed to God every single day. So on Tuesday, May 6, 2008, you know, I was really having a bad day for some reason, and around 3:00 in the afternoon I received a call, a private phone number. And I answered the phone unknowingly, like, “Hello?” and then I asked who it was, and they said, “It’s the Oakland Raiders.” The job? A television producer. From then on, my life was faith and football.
You see, in football the common saying is, “Any given Sunday”, because you treat each game as if it’s your last game. You know, when I’m on the sidelines filming the game, doing my thing, I witness players fight for every inch[On-Screen Text Graphics]
Faith & Football
Marcus: to reach that goal line, which is a touchdown. And every play… every game, every play, every inch, every down, your eyes are set on the prize, and it all starts with preparation and faith.
Now, in football, it’s not about a one man team, it’s not about one guy. It’s about the team. Everyone comes together to make a play a success, you know. And I’ve witnessed and I’ve learned that it’s always dedication and patience. You know, football requires discipline and good work ethic. At practice, coaches always watch you, what you’re doing at practice. Every play that you do at practice, every play you do at the games, you’re always evaluated by the coaching staff.
And lastly, the team needs to prepare. The way the team prepares for game day is, you know, they go to classrooms to learn what the play… to learn their opponents who they’re playing that week, listening to their coaches, exercising, making sure your body’s healthy for that week. You know, these are all lessons what a team does to prepare for game days.
And lastly, faith. In my career, my faith is always tested, because every April the NFL, they always come out with the schedule of the upcoming games for this upcoming season. What I do, as a Church (Of Christ) member, I look at the schedule. I look at the schedule, I look at the cities and dates of where I’m going to later that fall. And so what I do, I immediately go to www.incmedia.org to see if there is a congregation in that city. And if there’s not, then I would attend here locally and take the first flight out to meet the team.
In 2014, our team was on a losing streak. We started the season 0 and 10, you know, and so regardless we never gave up. My job was to continue to inspire the fans through media, and for the players, their job was to keep fighting and never lose hope.
But September of 2014, I had the opportunity to accompany the team to London, England for an international game. And so, I planned my worship service schedules, how to get there, and arranged contacts with mutual friends. But the thing that I wasn’t ready for, however, was when…was getting a phone call that my mother was rushed to the hospital — It tore me apart. I didn’t know what to do. I called my father, I said, “Dad, what’s going on? Should I take the first flight out to see… to go home?” He said, “Son, don’t worry about it. Do your thing, take care of everything over there, and everything will be okay with your mother.”
I broke down in tears when I got off the phone. It was probably one of the biggest decisions in my life. When I was in London, I attended (worship service) in the congregation of Heathrow, England. You know, the brethren there were so welcoming. They welcomed me with open arms, they treated me like family. And so, I appreciated what they did. I felt like home, because they welcomed me with open arms. But, with constant prayers, you know I prayed to God in that sanctuary in Heathrow, “Please, heal my mother. I beg of You to please.” Luckily, after constant prayers, she was discharged before I returned home from London, and I could tell you that till this day, you know, she still is one of my biggest cheerleaders. And I love her so much.
That’s faith and football.
I carry these lessons with me out on my game days. My game days are Sundays and Wednesdays. My uniform? It’s a choir robe. My work ethic and preparation are built upon constant practices and prayers. You see, when I’m on the road with the team, I make sure my faith is first and my worship is never interrupted.
Thank you very much.[On-Screen Text Graphics]
STORIES WITH PURPOSE [Video Closes]