(Photo taken from Pinterest)

I wrote a blog on my website about what I love about the Spurs winning the NBA Championship. You can check it out here.

I think there are even more reasons we can draw as a campus ministry. So here are the SEVEN things every campus ministry can learn from the 2014 San Antonio Spurs:

1. Build your team.

In contrast to the Heat’s dramatically acquiring Lebron, Bosh, and Ray Allen. The Spurs got late draft picks (except Duncan), foreign players, and players who were rejected by other teams and turned them into the best team in the NBA.

Start with wherever you are and build your team from there.

2. Trust your young players.

Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green played significant minutes in last year’s Finals. They lost, but they also learned a valuable lesson along the way. This year, they were much better for it.

Give your younger players experience and playing time. You’ll be glad you did.

3. Never tolerate bad attitudes.

Jeff Van Gundy was commenting that he couldn’t believe how the Spurs players would accept substitutions, coach discipline, and correction without acting up. They were never seen having a negative attitude.

We should never tolerate bad attitudes from our team or one another. They always bring the team down and it isn’t worth the drama.

4. Pass the ball to one another often.

One of the famous plays included six passes to all the players on the court, ending in a wide-open Ginobli layup. Passing the ball includes more people and creates opportunities.

We also pass the ball by including people in our work and delegating responsibility to them. Are you trying to carry your whole team by yourself? Stop wasting time. Pass the ball and see how winning becomes easier when you do it as a team. (Of course, you also need #1, #2, #3, #5, and #6 to do this.)

5. Move without the ball.

The Spurs can pass to each other because everyone moves without the ball. Everyone is cutting, setting screens, or getting open. When you move without the ball, it becomes easy to pass to you and easy to shoot.

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In the same way, we should all “move without the ball.” If you only come on time when you’re speaking, if you only pay attention when it directly concerns you, if you’re only interested in being in the spotlight, you won’t ever get there. But if you do the hard work while you AREN’T in the spotlight, you will find yourself creating great opportunities for everyone.

6. Find your system and stick to it.

The Spurs stuck to their brand of basketball. When they lost Game 2, Mark Jackson commented, “They got out of character… You gotta trust Spurs basketball.” When they did something that wasn’t their specialty, they lost. When they stuck to their system, they won convincingly.

We also have a system that works for us. We Make Disciples and Train Leaders. Let’s stick to it relentlessly. We should screen everything and ask, “Will this help us make disciples? Will this help us train leaders?”

7. Stay hungry.

After winning Game 3 in historical fashion, the Spurs had a new challenge: how do they stay just as intense and passionate when they won so easily? Having one blowout game could be a combination of skill and luck. But to do it three times in a row against the defending champions is a sign of discipline.

In the same way, many people become complacent because of a few “wins” in campus ministry – a successful event, a larger youth service, or a bigger support team. These are good, but they’re far from our true goal – the day when every student in every campus in every nation is a disciple of Jesus. Until then, every other “win” is just a step to the Championship.