Tackling Glyn Blaize
TACKLING GLYN BLAIZE
Is it possible to have a healthy involvement in sport, and still put Christianity first particularly when it comes to keeping the Lord’s Day?
David Henderson talks to Rugby player, Glyn Blaize, in ‘Day One Magazine’ of the Lord’s Day Observance Society, May-August 2002. Glyn’s father is Pastor Achille Blaize.
How did you come to know the Lord?
I was brought up in an evangelical church in Stratford, London. I still attend the same church. Going to church eased my conscience as I was able to sit on the fence with one foot in the world and the other in the church. As the son of a minister who had been taught the Scriptures and the ways of God from a child, I had enough head knowledge to talk and fit into Christian situations.
As I grew up the pressures began to catch up with me. I had to face issues such as keeping the Lord’s Day, and socialising too much with non-Christian friends. I knew within my heart what I had to do. I cried unto God to help me and He gave me a fire in my belly and a huge desire to follow after Him.
Where did your conviction about the Lord’s Day come from?
My conviction about the Lord’s Day started before I became a Christian. At school I developed an interest in rugby, and would always get through to the final trials, which would inevitably be on Sundays. This prevented me from participating. I found this difficult until I searched out the reason and found I couldn’t get away from the 4th Commandment. I can actually remember my father giving me stickers for an LDOS campaign against Sunday trading. It was very reassuring to know that others believed as I did. You need these examples when you’re young.
How did your love for sport (especially rugby) start and develop?
I have always been a keen sportsman. I can remember my Dad buying me my first cricket set, perhaps in the belief that I might one day be a competent cricketer! He used to take me down to the sports centre and bowl at, what seemed to me, 100 miles an hour whilst I tried my hand. I started playing rugby when I began secondary school and as I was bigger than all the other children I naturally took to it. Throughout my school days I loved and enjoyed playing rugby. I was only fourteen when I played my first match for the 6th form first team. Whilst in the sixth form I had trials at Wasps which had the only 1st division colts team which played on a Saturday. From there I developed as a player going through Colts under 21S and then 1st team squad. At J9 I went to Loughborough University which is pretty well renowned for its rugby prowess. There I began to play in European competitions and BUSA and other international matches such as English universities and England student U21. In my final year I moved to rugby Lions which is closer to Loughborough. On my 1st team debut I had a rugby injury which put me out for around two years.
What difficulties have you experienced over playing sport on the Lord’s Day?
Difficulties? Where do I start? I suppose most notable was at Wasps RFC. I had been playing for a few years and brought through the junior levels into the senior and arrived into the 1st team squad. That year Wasps bought Inga Tuigamala, my hero from childhood. He also professes to be a Christian but has chosen to play on the Lord’s Day. This presented me with a huge problem! The director of rugby at the time told me that if I wanted a career at Wasps I would have to start playing on Sundays and asked me to chat with Inga. However, my mind was already made up. I would not play on Sundays.
I again had problems at university, since Loughborough is sports orientated. The intensity increased when I became a sports secretary, but having nailed my flag to the mast early on, I was able to deal with the pressure by God’s grace.
How are you sure you made the right decisions?
God gives you peace and grace when you make biblical decisions. Through honouring him he honours you. In every situation when one door has closed another has opened. I can’t deny this is God. We can’t always see God’s will for our lives and I guess that is where trust/faith comes in. I believe that making the right decision helped me to focus more upon what is really important in this life.. glorifying God. I have a long way to go but I feel the great peace of God that passes all understanding has been given to me now I have made my stand.
What would you say to young Christian people and their parents who are tempted to get involved with sporting activities on the Lord’s Day?
To young Christians who are thinking of playing sports on Sunday I would ask them to read the 4th commandment and seek to understand what it really means. Jesus said, ‘If you love me you will keep my commandments.’ What an opportunity to show our love to Jesus.
What do you say to Christians who say they can worship God as much on the golf course as in church?
There is no substitute for public or private worship. In the words on Epheren Syrus; ‘He who pampers the body and starves the soul is like one who feasts his slave and starves his wife,’ The Bible warns us not to forsake meeting with God’s people. God knew exactly what he was doing when He gave the Sabbath.
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