Sports & Clothing Series: Josh Lane

This week Noah and Bjorn continued their clothing series by speaking with Josh Lane. Josh is assistant director of First Priority South Florida, which according to its website has the mission of connecting the church to the campus in order to “Help Christian students learn the Gospel so they can share it with their peers”.  

Josh is also the founder of 1Word Brand, which sells clothing that features a single word people should focus their life on. 1Word Brand also has a blog and podcast.   

Josh graduated from Taylor University in 2019, where he played infield for the baseball team.  

What Did Baseball Teach Josh About His Faith? 

“God exposed some serious areas of spiritual weakness through the game of baseball for me to personally grow”--Josh Lane 

One thing Josh says baseball taught him about his faith is that it has to be a part of everything we do. We can’t compartmentalize our faith and put it in a box that is separate from the rest of our lives. He says that wherever we are, we have an opportunity for God to shape us.  

Baseball gave Josh an example of how he can apply his faith to these everyday areas of his life and be a light to those around him.  

On the podcast Josh talks about an experience he went through one summer when playing baseball and how this experience gave him an opportunity to practice being a light to others.  

Josh also shares the belief of former podcast guest Bob Schindler, in that sports can reveal the true character of both yourself and others.  

When playing a sport, it’s hard to maintain a persona that you may be putting up to disguise your true self.  

When playing the frustrating game of baseball, Josh says that God exposed some serious areas of spiritual weakness that he was struggling with.  

In the episode Josh talks about what weaknesses were revealed to him through baseball and how he worked to overcome them.  

What is 1Word Brand? 

“At 1Word Brand we find a lot of the times goals and aspirations and New Year’s resolutions are tied up in doing. At 1Word we hope it was tied up in being and becoming”--Josh Lane 

Josh says the idea for 1Word Brand started in his dorm room at Taylor University. He loved writing one word on an index card and taping it to his desk, putting it in his pocket or taping it to the bill of his hat every day at baseball practice.  

Josh loved focusing on one word because he had so many goals and ambitions, that accomplishing them seemed impossible. This one word was a process of simplifying things.  

Josh thought this idea could help other people too. On the podcast Josh talks about how 1Word Brand almost never came to fruition, but he’s glad it did because he feels like he’s been able to help a lot of people because of it.  

Josh says a lot of the times he finds goals are things people are caught up in doing. Instead, 1Word Brand wishes that goals were something people sought to become.  

1Word Brand doesn’t want you to just have goals or tasks to accomplish; it wants your one-word goal to be something God is making you become. The company is ultimately about choosing a word, wearing it or putting it in a place you’ll see, and then living it out to become that person.  

In the episode Josh talks about the difference this has made in his life. He also talks about what his word was last year and how he chose his word for 2021 based on an upcoming life-changing experience.  

Noah also mentions the words he has chosen, and Bjorn discusses how he has seen 1Word Brand affect Noah’s life.  

What is God Teaching You? 

Sports can serve so many purposes to us in our faith. While the platform that sports can provide to share our faith is an important aspect of this, an area that often gets glossed over is what sports can reveal to us about spiritual weaknesses we have.  

Sports are often high-pressure moments, and out of this can come many different emotions. Maybe sports reveal to us impatience that we didn’t know we struggled with, or anger. It could be any number of things. 

Because of this, sports are an invaluable teaching tool. They allow us to recognize areas that we need to ask God for assistance in. Because of sports, we have the potential to work to improve ourselves and grow closer to God.  

Josh also brings up a good point when he talks about goals and how they are often viewed by people. Instead of goals being something that we are caught up in doing, they are something that we should seek to become.  

If we realize that we struggle with patience, we shouldn’t aim to hide our feelings of impatience so that we come across as more patient to others. Instead, we should work to actually become a more patient person. 

A true goal should not be focused on working to accomplish “doing it”. We should focus on making it a part of our life.  

In addition, our goals can often feel overwhelming and impossible to accomplish. What if your goal is to become a better person? What does that mean? 

By breaking our goals down into tangible things, we can make them more manageable and work to accomplish them in a more realistic way. Focusing on one thing can lead to quality improvements in that area.  

To stick with the example brought up throughout this podcast, what if instead of having the goal of becoming a better person we instead focus first on becoming more patient, if patience is something we struggle with. 

This doesn’t mean that we can’t also improve other areas of our life, but by focusing on one thing for a substantial period of time and by putting forward time and effort, we will see ourselves become the specific goal that we are working towards.  

Breaking things down one at a time so that they’re more manageable doesn’t mean that we don’t need God’s help to accomplish this - we still do. We can’t accomplish anything without the strength and love that He provides for us. 

Instead, by focusing on one word, dedicating ourselves to this and leaning on God, we can glorify Him by improving upon our weaknesses and displaying the virtues of Christ.  

Have sports or other areas of high stress revealed spiritual weaknesses to you? Are you focused on “doing” a goal or “becoming” it? 

Do you break down your goals? What is your “one word” for this year?

Reading Suggestions 

  • Proverbs 15:22 

  • Proverbs 16:9 

  • Luke 14:28 

To hear the conversation that Noah and Bjorn had with Josh about what baseball taught him about his faith, what 1Word Brand is, Josh’s word of 2020 and his word for 2021, what God taught him during 2020, and much more, check out “The Sweat Room: Sports and Faith” episode 44.