“If anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules” (2 Tim. 2:5).
Few athletic achievements speak louder than the elusive Olympic gold medal. In fact the gold medal often represents a lifetime of achievement in a particular sport. At the 2000 summer games, with the whole world watching and the United States national anthem playing in the background, current Dallas Seminary student Brandon Slay stood on a raised platform in Sydney, Australia, and received a gold medal for freestyle wrestling—a dream he’d had since he was eight years old.
As a wrestler, Brandon finds numerous similarities between training to compete and striving to balance holiness and grace.
Athletic preparation on the highest level requires discipline through multiple training sessions a day, and detailed study of your sport, yourself, and also your opponent,” says Brandon, who is studying for a master’s degree in theology.
Born and raised in Amarillo, Texas, Brandon went on to graduate from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He closed out his career wrestling record with 141 wins and only four losses.
“As Christians we train by reading the Word daily, comparing ourselves to it, and being aware of our opponent who wants us to fail,” Brandon says. “Christians must have an eternal perspective and not let the daily, worldly struggles keep us down.”
When he’s not studying, Brandon hosts wrestling clinics or speaks to youth, churches, and companies across the country. Check out his ministry, Greater Gold, at www.brandonslay.com.
This profile was originally published in the Spring 2006 issue of Dallas Seminary's Kindred Spirit magazine.
The mission of Dallas Theological Seminary is to
glorify God by equipping godly servant-leaders
for the proclamation of His Word and the
building up of the body of Christ worldwide.