Whether he was on the court or coaching from the sidelines, athletics have always played a large role in Rick York’s life since he was a youngster.
York, currently director of Athletic Academic Services, works with the Athletic Department, athletes and the registrar to ensure academic compliance.
“The main part of my job is to try to help those athletes who don’t do as well in the classtoimprovetheirstudy skills,” York said.
He envisions that all of the athletes will compete for something greater than themselves and realize that it is not all about the sport.
“God gave you talent — certainly when I was younger I didn’t see it that way. I played for my glory, but I would love for athletes to play for God’s glory; to realize where the talent and abilities come from and this incredible opportunity and use it to glorify God,” York said.
Prior to working at California Baptist University, he made his living selling real estate.
“The Lord got a hold of me and put it on my heart to come over here to minister to athletes,” he said.
Making the transition to CBU became a huge platform for the ministry that York is involved in today.
“God just used that event to break me and humble me, and as I turned to him he began to change my life and put on my heart that he wanted to use me to impact more lives,” York said.
York’s job description has evolved during his 16-year term as a Lancer. He began as the team chaplain in the fall of 1996.
With his role at CBU, York desires most to be the coach he never had — one who deeply cares and desires to impact the lives of the athletes he encounters long term.
“I played sports all my life and I felt like I never had a coach who truly cared about me as a person — it was all about athletic ability. I decided early in life I wanted to impact lives,” York said.
What he desires most for athletes to take away is the emulation of his example, similar to how the apostle Paul challenged followers to follow his example.
“Paul had the boldness to say, ‘Be like me.’ And I would challenge athletes to be like me. Paul wasn’t saying, ‘Be like me because I’m perfect; but be like me because I’m following Christ. Be like me because I understand that I’m nothing without Christ.’ Hopefully, that’s how I live my life,” York said.
York said he is incredibly appreciative for the platform God has provided to be a tool of his love in tangible ways.
“Still today, I am over- whelmedthatGodisusing an old guy in young peoples lives.” York said. Every day I leave thinking, ‘You’re getting old.’ But young people still like talking to me, so I’m going to keep showing up.
“I love the Lord and I want my life to matter for the Lord. I trust him on a daily basis and have found value in being obedient.”