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Lead By Example

“That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

2 Corinthians 12:10

A talented center from Lindstrom, Minnesota, Blake Lizotte grew up playing the game of hockey. After starting at different levels of youth hockey throughout his life, Lizotte soon made the decision to attend St. Cloud State University for his college years. It was with the Huskies of St. Cloud State that Lizotte began to make his impact known. The Huskies won their regular season championship in both years Lizotte was with them, and he finished on the First All Star Team for their conference, the NCHC. After deciding to leave for the NHL, Lizotte has had aspirations of not only becoming as skilled on the ice as he can, but also to make a difference away from the ice as well.

Much of Lizotte’s drive to make an impact in the community comes from his faith. Instilled in him from a young age, Lizotte’s mother, Lisa, always emphasized raising her children well. She says, “Having a personal relationship with Christ means living in faith and that means we can live knowing He has the best plan for our lives. Our obedience to Him and how we live our lives is a result of that faith. It’s not just following the rules, it’s having a heart that wants to do what He calls us to do.” In order to build up her children, much of the Lizotte routine consisted of reading the bible, praying, worshipping, and volunteering together. She continues, “Our faith is part of who we are and how we live day to day. It’s our attitude, words and actions. We marveled at God’s amazing goodness. Jesus is part of our conversation. We thank him for the good things and for the bad. We are grateful and we strive to not lose sight of how He gave us everything!” These efforts by Blake’s parents helped develop him into the strong and humble young man that he is today.

That faith was tested, however, when at the age of just 14, Blake’s father died suddenly in the middle of the night. As Blake and his family tried to grapple with their sudden loss, the weight of the emptiness that loomed without his prescence proved to be large. But even in the midst of the tragedy they tried to keep their focus and outlook positive. They still trusted that God had a plan, even if they couldn’t understand it at the time. For Lizotte, that faith instilled in him from his parents has been an anchor for him throughout his career. It has helped ease his nerves and take the ice with confidence. “ I think my faith influences my career by giving me the self confidence in who I am in Jesus and not how I play. In sports, everything is results driven. Keeping my faith in God helps me be even-keeled and helps me remain focused on what’s important…impacting people for the kingdom.” That impact is often seen by how Lizotte interacts with kids and spectators before games, bringing smiles to so many faces regardless of the results on the ice.

Hockey is a sport where faith isn’t as often on display. Lizotte doesn’t let this hinder him from standing firm in his faith, but rather views it as an opportunity to show love to others and let his actions reflect who he is. “I approach sharing my faith not by forcing conversation or Jesus on anybody. I try to lead by example and live a life that exemplifies what it means to live for Christ. If I am able to lead by example, I trust that God will provide opportunity for conversations to share my faith and how it will change lives.” As Lizotte uses his platform to spread and cultivate joy and kindness to our world, he is also grounded by a certain verse that he holds close.

“My favorite verse is 2 Corinthians 12:10: ‘That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.’ I love this verse because it is so applicable. Life isn’t going to always be easy or happy, but in this verse Jesus says to take delight and know that God has a grander plan. Another reason I love this verse is that it serves as a great reminder that we must rely on God and not our own understanding. For when we let go of our pride and let Jesus take over, we will be strong!” This verse has given Blake confidence to take the ice for the Kings knowing Whose he is. Each game is not only an opportunity to pick up a win for his team but also to use it as an opportunity to point people to Jesus.

Ethan Kruse

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