PAA Athlete Gives Thanks Even in Defeat

Trent Wade, a Portland Adventist Academy (PAA) junior and basketball point guard, was one of the players affected by the Oregon State Board of Education’s recent ruling that it is not necessary for the Oregon Sports Athletic Association (OSAA) to accommodate the Sabbath beliefs of any team in scheduling playoff games. OSAA is the governing body for high school sports in Oregon.

When questioned about this, Wade stated that it was a real downer when the team first got the news. He knew that this was a very special team and that he probably would never have the opportunity to play on another team as skilled as this one.

The team held a meeting shortly after this news was received and concluded that they were on a journey of faith in God and that He could make things happen. Regardless of the results, they affirmed that their faith, and specifically keeping the Sabbath, was much more important than any basketball game, even a playoff game.

Wade says he believes that a game such as basketball compares in some ways with the Christian’s life—that with practice, the team excels and, with regular practice, can go further than any other team has gone. Similarly, the more study and commitment to Christ, the higher and closer we can come to His ideal.

When questioned about how he thought the team was affected by this decision, he said that every player asked why they couldn’t go to state finals, causing them to think deeper and evaluate their priorities in their Christian life. However, he thinks that the majority of the team was strengthened spiritually by the decision.

Wade's final comment was, “In all things give thanks"—quite a statement for a person and for a team that suffered a disappointing defeat.

June 01, 2004 / Oregon Conference