23 Changed Lives


In addition to leading AIA’s Team Blogs, I had the privilege of serving with the Xenia High School Ultimate Training Camp (UTC) this summer. Erin, our director, captured our team experience:

UTC Xenia High School Image
“My team would arrive around 7 and I’d lead them in a staff meeting and prayer time, work on all of the logistics for the day and watch the Lord do His thing in these athletes’ lives until very late into the evening. My whole staff team operated on very little sleep and poured themselves into these athletes all week. I was reminded that all of the planning and hard work that went into this week was worth it. Twenty-three athletes made the decision to trust Christ as their Savior for the first time and are committed to go back to their teams and apply the principles they learned throughout the week. #UTCXenia!”
Over three months, 72 stories were published about the HS UTC. You can witness what God Xenia High School Ultimate Training Camp .

Family News

Walking Ellie to AlterThis summer has been quite eventful! Our family witnessed two big events for Ellie and Elizabeth.
On July 30th our family celebrated the marriage of Ellie to Austin. God blessed their day with great weather at the outdoor wedding in Mt. Sterling, OH.

Ellie, Austin, Karen
A few weeks ago, we rejoiced as Elizabeth started a new chapter in her life, one that’s exciting for all students, but exceptional in Elizabeth’s case.

Elizabeth at OU

Most of you know Elizabeth suffered from an extremely bad concussion and missed a year and a half of school. Through much prayer, God’s grace and very a talented concussion medical team at the University of Pittsburgh, Elizabeth is now attending Ohio University. Praise God!

Please review our prayer page  and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.

Click the following:   Sept 2016 Newsletter to  print a hard copy newsletter.

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You can impact Olympians!


Would you like to be a part of the 2,500-member prayer team who intercedes for Olympians by name?

Allyson Felix

Allyson Felix

Prayer team members will be sent the names of five Olympians along with information about their sports and their countries. Click here to join.

There are many ways AIA will be impacting Olympic athletes in Rio this summer: we will have chaplains available to minister to and pray with athletes, we will hold chapel services, and we will distribute our new Struggle and Triumph sports Bible and our new Struggle and Triumph film which is available in 25 languages. You can see and share the 34-minute film for free by downloading The Jesus Film app on your mobile device. This high-quality film features the stories of four Olympic heroes from four different countries who have grown in their faith in Christ through the struggles they have faced.Struggle and Triumph image

Another free resource we have produced is the Struggle and Triumph devotional series available on YouVersion Bible app for mobile devices and pc’s. You can share this 33-day devotional series with young athletes and anyone interested in the faith stories of Olympic athletes. Karen edited these devotions and wrote some of them, too. Because of your partnership with us, we are able to serve the body of Christ. We appreciate you!

Family News

Elizabeths Davidson GraduationThis is a very exciting summer for us. In addition to our regular work of managing AIA Team Blogs (Rick) and writing and editing (Karen), Rick is also blogging with our Ultimate Training Camps for high school students and Karen is discipling and coaching interns who are preparing to serve with AIA for the next year.

Austin and Ellie EngagementIn family news, we rejoiced to watch Elizabeth graduate from high school, which is a miracle we continually thank God for; we are preparing for Ellie’s wedding to Austin Church; and we recently learned we will be grandparents to Erica and Parrish’s first child.

Please review our prayer page  and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.  Click the following:  AIA Newsletter July 2016 to  print a hard copy newsletter.

Discover your “why!”


Why do we work, play, or do anything?

There’s a motivation for everything we do, whether we are conscious of it or not.

In three minutes you can watch how AIA is helping hundreds of athletes and coaches every year to discover their “why.”

During this project, many on the team discovered their foundational rock which they will build upon for the rest of their lives.

Can you imagine helping someone discover their why, their foundational rock of life?  Now imagine this being your job!  That’s our privilege.

Please share this post so others can learn about opportunities with AIA.

If you are on Facebook, please like our ministry page and start following Athletes in Action’s Ao1 page. You can partner with us by sharing AIA’s ministry with people in your network.

Learn more about Athletes in Action or our ministry.

Principles Matter


Deverin had decided to play basketball for the glory of God, but now he found he couldn’t play at all.

Christian athletes often struggle to combine Deverin in AIA jackettheir faith with their sports. Deverin, a lean, 6’9” basketball player is no exception. When the opportunity arose to put basketball and his new faith together by going on a tour with Athletes in Action, Deverin wasn’t sure he wanted to, but a persistent AIA staff member convinced this former atheist, now a new Christian, to apply.

“I had not counted on God capturing my heart during training camp and changing me.”

During training, Deverin learned The Principles, AIA’s curriculum giving athletes a biblical framework in which participation in sport is an opportunity to worship God. Each of the five principles focuses on a story from the Bible and applies it to sport and competition.

As he competed, Deverin experienced the power of Principle #1: Audience of One, which emphasizes how to worship God while participating in your sport. He learned that God alone is worthy of worship, especially on the ball court where his performance becomes a thank you gift to God.

Determined to be a witness to his teammates on his campus when he returned from the AIA tour, Deverin began to apply The Principles. Then, unexpectedly, he injured his shoulder, a devastating blow for any athlete. But God did something totally unexpected. Rather than use Deverin’s stellar performance on the court, God used his injury and inability to compete to reach Deverin’s teammates.

As Deverin recovered, Principle #4: Hurtin’ for Certain took center court. This principle focuses on God’s purposes for our trials. Because Deverin trusted in God‘s sovereignty, the door was wide open for him to share his faith with his teammates. Then things started to change on his campus. First, his teammates started to attend campus Bible studies, then other athletes from other sports teams, until the group went from 20 to over 200 athletes by the end of the semester.

In Deverin’s own words, “The trip with AIA made me realize what living your faith looks like…It taught me to be humble and surrender myself to God.

Your prayers and support allow us to serve!  Thanks!

Please review our prayer page  (latest news on Elizabeth’s condition) and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.  Click the following:  Nov 2014 to  print a hard copy newsletter.

She needs your prayers


Biff, Oct 2014 Newsletter, ResizedImagine walking when your brain’s ability to process sensory input lags behind, like when audio and video are out of sync on your TV. Imagine an unstable world where focusing the words on a page is nearly impossible and you have no down dial for volume or brightness; where there are unrelenting headaches, dizziness and nausea, and your heart constantly races 50% faster than normal because your nervous system is just trying to keep up.This is the life our 16-year-old daughter Elizabeth has lived for the past two years since suffering a concussion playing field hockey.

Since then she has endured testing and treatment from many doctors and therapists and has tried meds, therapies and treatments we had never even heard of. The past several months have been filled with appointments and exercises we are to do with her. At this point, school is nearly impossible for her since she can’t read, use the computer or concentrate for more than a short time without worsening her headache. She needs your prayers.

On Monday, October 13th at 5:00 p.m. we are inviting a couple of pastors from our church to anoint Elizabeth with oil and pray with us for her. Would you join us on that day through prayer and fasting for her? You can fast from a meal, all your meals or anything else you are willing to fast from. Jesus said that some things are only accomplished through fasting and prayer. We are not trying to persuade an unwilling God, nor are we attempting to obligate Him by the number of people praying or because of our fasting; we are crying out to a loving Father who created and knows Elizabeth and has good plans for her.

Please pray for:

  • complete healing of Elizabeth’s brain
  • Elizabeth to allow God to use this trial for good in her life
  • wisdom for the doctors and therapists treating her now
  • the provision and direction to seek further treatment for her

Your prayers and support allow us to serve!  Thanks!

Please review our prayer page and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.  Click the following:  Oct 2014 to  print a hard copy newsletter.

Once we know…


Have you ever experienced meeting someone who expressed compassion or care without any strings attached? Your world,June 2014, Darvin sharing gospel at least for a brief period, might have been transformed. Imagine further that this person traveled thousands of miles to meet you. How would you feel? If you’re like me, you would be wondering what was going on.

Amanda, Kristen, and Gabriel found themselves expressing compassion to a young man recently in Puerto Rico. As he realized they were expressing true compassion, everything changed. Kelsey and Grant were also sharing with four young men, and by the end of the conversation two of them accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior.

June 2014, Amanda, Kristen, GabrielThese students were part of AIA’s Extreme Challenge project to Puerto Rico – one of 15 missions projects currently underway or recently completed. They are experiencing what it means to be connected to Christ and live out 2 Corinthians 4:6; For God who said “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.” Just as Christ has pursued them, they are now pursuing June 2014, Kelsey and Grant
others because of Christ’s love in their lives. The lives of these student athletes have been transformed as well, and they are experiencing an authentic relationship with Christ!  You can click on either image her them tell their story.

These are two of countless encounters for over 400 athletes/coaches serving in 30 countries around the world on at least 35 projects, touching thousands of lives. Together we and you are assisting them by training them on how to share what God is doing through their projects this summer for others to see. See more about these stories at “Fishers of Men” or visit AIA’s Team Blogs.

Your prayers and support allow us to serve with them!  Thanks!

Please review our prayer page and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.  Click the following:  June 2014  to  print a hard copy newsletter.

We may not win another game…


“We may not win another game this year, and I may be a horrible coach,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said, “but if any of Scott Drew, Baylor Coach Quotethese guys leave without knowing Christ, that will be the real loss.” “Winning the game of life is a lot more rewarding than a 40-minute basketball game that’s so temporary,” he said. “To have an opportunity to help be a part of an impact on a young person’s life is the best feeling.” Coach Drew and a team of folks who love, care for, and coach the Baylor men’s basketball team witnessed five players give their lives to Christ and publicly proclaim their faith through baptism! They have been serving with the team for years, seeing a victory here or there and patiently impacting lives by living out their faith. This year, God has chosen to put them in the spotlight. “We don’t force anyone. We had players that came from different religious AIA Basketball Breakbackgrounds,” Drew said. “Our job’s not to judge, our job is to serve. Jesus came for the sick, not the healthy. I don’t think we ever make people feel awkward or different or embarrassed that they don’t have the same beliefs or faith.” AIA staff had the privilege of being involved with the team as well. In one quote, Foxsports.com shared that one of the players told a chaplain ”he was miserable and didn’t want to live according to his own plan anymore. A summer trip with the Christian basketball organization Athletes in Action had planted the idea of “playing for God.”

Catch more at “Baylor’s ‘extraordinary’ season has left lives changed” or see another story at “Scott Drew and Baylor best-kept secret left in NCAA Tournament”.  

Your prayers and support allow us to serve with them!  Thanks!

Please review our prayer page and support needs and lift up our ministry to the Lord.  Click the following:   April 2014 to  print a hard copy newsletter.