Sunday, July 22, 2018

L O V E
Matthew 25:40

What kind of things do you do for people you love?  How do you express your love for your family, friends, teammates and others?  How do we express a love for God?


Jesus gives us an answer as to what He sees as loving action, in Matthew chapter 25 and verse 40.  He says, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”  There are two big ideas in this text.  Who are Jesus’ brothers and what can we do for them?


Who are these Jesus calls the least of His brothers?  In the context of this parable, they’re people in jail, the sick, strangers, the hungry, the thirsty and the homeless.  Jesus says that acts of love and mercy toward these people are equal to loving acts toward Him.


What can we do for people like these?  What would you do for anyone whom you encounter daily?  Show respect, compassion, mercy and love.  If you encounter the least, as in the list above, love God through loving them.  If you encounter your teammates, coaches, classmates, even professors; love God through loving them.  Show them respect, compassion, mercy and love.


In today’s game you have a marvelous opportunity to express love for God by treating people as you would Him.  Imagine how you’d treat Him if He showed up here and you were face to face.  Treat everyone that way tonight.  Even the officials! Have a great game and thereby honor the Lord Jesus.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 12:13-21
II Thessalonians 2:13-17
Psalms 147
II Chronicles 25-27

Saturday, July 21, 2018

U N D E R S T A N D I N G
Proverbs 3:5-6

Who is the smartest person you know?  Who knows more about your sport than anyone else does?  How smart are you?  How heavily do you rest on your limited understanding?  Let’s consider some wisdom in these matters.


In Solomon’s writings of wisdom at Proverbs chapter 3 and verses 5 and 6, we read, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”


Most of us would have to admit that we have a limited understanding of our game.  Even our coaches know that even with their extensive experience, they have not exhausted the available knowledge of the sport.  That’s the focus of that phrase, “lean not on your own understanding.”  Solomon is encouraging us to seek a source of wisdom and understanding outside ourselves.


In today’s competition, look to your teammates and coaching staff for understanding of situations, opportunities and techniques.  Look to family for encouragement and love.  Look to God for understanding in the most important matters of life.  You can lean on His understanding it’s available and immense.  Have a great day of competition.



Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 12:1-12
II Thessalonians 2:1-12
Psalms 146
II Chronicles 22-24

Friday, July 20, 2018

T R U S T
Proverbs 3:5-6

In whom do you place your trust?  How much do you trust that person?  Could you trust him or her with your very life?  Today’s letter will encourage us to trust someone with every facet of life, even your sport.


In Proverbs chapter 3 and verses 5 and 6 we read, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”


To trust someone is to place you faith in that person, to give him or her a measure of control of your fate.  That’s scary for most of us.  This verse says to trust God with all your heart.  Not with 50% of your heart but 100% of it.  We’re not given the luxury of hedging our bets and leaving an easy escape route.  This requires real commitment.


Even scarier is that it is our heart with which we’re asked to trust Him.  More valuable than your body or your mind is your heart.  He wants you to trust Him with 100% of your inmost being. 


The great thing for us is that God is also 100% trustworthy.  He won’t trick us or leave us hanging when we commit ourselves to His trust.  He can be trusted in all matters of life to pursue our best interest with an unlimited amount of power, wisdom and love.  What a deal!


In today’s competition, trust the Lord to enable you to make the plays you dream about.  Trust Him to help you be a team leader.  Trust Him to help you battle injury, doubt and frustration.  Remember trust Him 100% because He’s 100% trustworthy.  Have a great game!

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 11:37-54
II Thessalonians 1:8-12
Psalms 145
II Chronicles 20-21

Thursday, July 19, 2018

D I S T R A C T I O N S
Mark 11:7-8

Can you recall the feelings of arriving home after winning a championship or a victory over your fiercest rival?  Maybe there were crowds awaiting your return, a police escort with fire trucks and a motorcade of minivans painted with the names of your teammates and uniform numbers.  How did you keep your mind focused on your sport and not get distracted by all the noise?


In Mark chapter 11 and verses 7 and 8 we can see how Jesus handled similar circumstances in his life.  There we read, “When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it.  Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields.  Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, ‘Hosanna!  Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!  Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!  Hosanna in the highest!’  Jesus entered Jerusalem and went to the temple.”


When I read this I see a team bus coming back into town having just won a championship and crowds of fans waiting for the team on the edge of town.  Everyone is excited, honking horns, screaming and shouting congratulations to the team.  Imagine how Jesus and His followers must have felt.


Watch Jesus’ reaction and gain some wisdom about how to handle success.  Does He get caught up in all the excitement and lose His head in the adulation?  No, rather He maintained His focus on His mission.  He went straight to work on accomplishing His purposes at the temple.


Let’s learn from Jesus and keep our minds focused on our team goals even when we’re surrounded by people telling us how great we are.  Let’s not be distracted by the adulation of fans or the fawning of sports reporters.  Compete today with a strong focus on your goals and fulfill the objectives for this season.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 11:29-36
II Thessalonians 1:1-7
Psalms 144
II Chronicles 17-19

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

B A D    A T T I T U D E S
I Corinthians 13:5

Do you know anyone who holds grudges or seems to have a recording of every wrong ever done to him or her?  These are generally joyless, less than loving people who make for poor teammates and friends.


Paul wrote to his friends in Corinth some enlightening words about God's kind of love, at chapter 13 and verse 5 of his first letter he says, "It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."


These rather ugly characteristics don't fit in a heart filled with love.  They're like oil and water, they don't mix.  Keep these things away from your team and you'll find success as a strong, cohesive unit.  Love is the key and it's born of a heart of commitment to family, friends, and teammates.



Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 11:14-28
I Thessalonians 5:12-28
Psalms 143

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

R E N E W E D   S T R E N G T H
Isaiah 40:30-31

When was the last time you were running in practice and your legs felt like spaghetti?  Did you wish for wings so you could fly?  Did you long for a new set of legs that didn't get tired?  Where could one find new strength and vigor for the day's competition?  The Bible has an answer.


In the prophet Isaiah's book at chapter 40 and verses 30 through 31 it says, "Even youths grow tired and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." 



Everybody gets tired, even the best of us get a little weary.  The promise here is that we don't have to be overcome by fatigue, but can soar beyond our limits.


How does that work?  He says here that those who wait on the Lord will renew their strength.  This waiting is to trust, to see a source of power outside ourselves.  Even when you're growing tired, out of breath, legs turning to rubber, trust and press on.


Trust God to put some spring back in your legs, some wind back in your lungs, some focus back in your vision, some power back in your arms.  Most of all trust Him for some renewed faith, hope and love in your heart. 

Play today with a sense that you've tapped into an inexhaustible source of power.  Play with strength that's renewed minute by minute. 

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 11:1-13
I Thessalonians 5:1-11
II Chronicles 10-12

Monday, July 16, 2018

H U M I L I T Y
Matthew 23:12

Have you ever seen the last place team, jump up and beat the previously undefeated, first place squad?  How could that happen?


In Matthew’s gospel at chapter 23 and verse 12, Jesus is recorded as saying, “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”  That happens a lot in competition.


Many times we see a team strut onto the floor, exalting themselves and believing themselves to be invincible.  How quickly they can fall, often to teams with inferior talent.  They are those who exalt themselves and are humbled.


Other teams have an honest estimate of their strengths and weaknesses.  They are conscious of their abilities and those things they should not attempt.  They approach the game with respect for opponents and quiet confidence in their teammates and coaches.  These are the humble who are consequently exalted.


In this contest, have an attitude of quiet confidence.  Know fully your team’s strengths and weaknesses.  Have an honest estimate of your abilities and a healthy respect for your opponents.  If you will humble yourselves, it’s God’s job to exalt you, to lift you up at the appropriate time.  Trust Him deeply and play with all your heart.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 10:38-42
Psalms 141
II Chronicles 8-9

Sunday, July 15, 2018

W I S D O M
Proverbs 2:6

Who is the greatest source for wisdom in your life?  Maybe you’re thinking of your mom or dad.  Maybe it’s your coach.  The Scripture speaks of someone who is the ultimate source for wisdom and understanding.

In Proverbs chapter 2 and verse 6, Solomon writes, “For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”


He says that from the Lord’s mouth come knowledge and understanding.  God speaks through His Word daily and gives us knowledge that is pertinent information for daily living.  He also shares his understanding with us, the ability to rightly apply knowledge.


As you prepare for competition today, listen for the Lord’s voice.  He’s always speaking in ways to lead us to knowledge and understanding.  He gives wisdom related to relationships on the team, for excellence in the classroom, and understanding for athletic achievement.


God’s Word, the Bible is always open to us and He speaks loudly each time we’re faithful to open its pages and to read.


Bible Reading Plan:
I Thessalonians 4:1-10
Psalms 140
II Chronicles 6-7

Saturday, July 14, 2018

L O V I N G    D E E P L Y
I Peter 1:22

Who is there in your life that you love deeply, from the heart?  You’re probably thinking of family members, your best friends, hopefully some teammates and coaches.  Today’s scripture encourages us to love that way.


In Peter’s first letter at chapter 1 and verse 22 it says, “Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.” 


Peter calls these people to love each other from the depths of their souls.  Most of us love shallowly, from our self-interests.


My challenge to you is to love your teammates deeply, from the heart.  Not shallowly from simple emotion or sentimentality.  Love deeply, from the very center of your being.  Not just on the surface or only when it’s convenient.


Such love among teammates is built on commitment to each other.  You have forged your team’s commitment to each other on the field of competition and through countless of hours in practice and conditioning.  Commit yourself to your teammates and your coaching staff and you will love deeply, from the heart.


As you prepare to compete today, make some commitments to your team in your hearts.  Demonstrate those commitments by how you perform, lead and encourage.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 10:17-24
I Thessalonians 3:7-13
Psalms 139
II Chronicles 3-5

Friday, July 13, 2018

S E R V A N T – L E A D E R S H I P
Mark 10:42-45

Who is someone from your sport, that if he was to walk in the room right now, we’d all feel compelled to give up our seats, to offer something to drink and to serve in any way possible?  Who would be deserving of such respect and admiration?

Jesus was certainly such a person in His day, but He refused such treatment.  Why?  We can read about His reasoning in Mark chapter 10 and verses 42 through 45, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.  Not so with you.  Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.  For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

With each sentence, Jesus raised the price tag for leadership.
• He said that greatness comes through service of the team.
• He said that being first comes as we subject ourselves to everyone else.
• He now says that to be like Him, means self-sacrifice.

How does that happen in competition?  When you put your team’s success ahead of your personal achievement, that’s self-sacrifice.  When you prefer the team’s goals to your personal goals, that’s great leadership.  When you sacrifice your privilege in order to free a teammate to achieve, you’re leading like Jesus.

As you approach this day’s competition, do so with a predetermined will to lead through service and sacrifice.  Pay whatever it costs to free your teammates to achieve at their highest level of the season.  Be a team leader like Jesus and give your life as a ransom for many.

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 10:1-16
I Thessalonians 3:1-6
Psalms 138
II Chronicles 1-2

Thursday, July 12, 2018

F E A R
Isaiah 41:13

What helps you to ward off fear when it comes?  How do you find confidence to combat such an enemy?  Who comes to your aid when you're gripped by fear?  One of many great promises for overcoming fear from the Bible follows.

In Isaiah's book of prophecy at chapter 41 and verse 13 he says, "For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear;  I will help you."  I hope that's an encouraging idea, that God would take you each by the hand and help you.   I don't know about you, but I need help every day.

If you can, imagine what it would look like for God to take you by the hand and help you in the work you have to do.  He takes your right hand and leads you through the times of grief, stress, loneliness, depression, even through times of great success.  He's really there for each of us, just like He was running up and down the floor, holding your hand and encouraging you with each step.

He says, "Do not fear, I will help you."  Whatever produces fear for you, commit it to Him in prayer as you prepare and trust Him to help you.

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 9:51-62
I Thessalonians 2:10-20
Psalms 137

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

A T T I T U D E
I Corinthians 13:4

How would you describe your attitude coming into today's game?  How well are you getting along with your teammates and coaching staff?  How about some thoughts on attitudes that transform people and teams?  Let's talk about love in its purest form.

In Paul's first letter to his friends in Corinth at chapter 13 and verse 4 he says, "Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud."  This is God's kind of love, way beyond human emotions and based in deep commitment.


These are attitudes we can take into today's contest.  Exercise patience and kindness with your teammates when they fail.  Put away the envy that separates the players who play a lot from those who play much less.  Put down your prideful boasting over your personal statistics and concentrate on the team's success.  Love is the key for each of these characteristics to be found in us.



Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 9:37-50
I Thessalonians 2:1-9
I Chronicles 26-28

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

C O M M A N D M E N T S
Matthew 22:40

Have you ever competed in a domed stadium or seen a game in one?  Do you fully understand what holds the roof up?  How does that thing stay up there with snow on it?  From what does the roof hang?

In Matthew chapter 22 and at verse 40, Jesus concludes His talk about the greatest commandments, “All the Law and the Prophets hang on these commandments.” 

Jesus is saying that all the Bible’s wisdom and insight for living hang on the commands to love God and to love people.  How much of your life hangs on these?  How deeply have you committed yourself to loving God, then to appropriating His inexhaustible love toward others? 

Let’s make it our mission to abandon all in the pursuit of this kind of love.  The whole of life hangs on loving God and people. 

Let’s also abandon all tonight in pursuit of today’s victory.  The whole of this season may hang on this ball game.  We can best do that as we love God with every fiber of our beings and love others as we love ourselves.

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 9:28-36
Psalms 135
I Chronicles 23-25

Monday, July 9, 2018

Wisdom

W I S D O M
Proverbs 1:7

As we all know, the fundamentals of your sport are the beginning of success.  How foolish would it look to compete at your level without knowledge of techniques and training?

In Proverbs chapter 1 and verse 7, the King writes, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.”  Just like the fundamentals of your sport lead to success, the fear of the Lord leads surely to knowledge.  Not only knowledge of one’s sport, but knowledge in the larger matters of life.

Fools despise wisdom and discipline, says the proverb.  A fool is one who has the ability to learn, but refuses to do so.  Fools turn up their noses at understanding and a well-ordered lifestyle.  A life under control seems, to them, to be unthinkable.

In today’s competition and through the rest of the season, apply every bit of knowledge you have concerning your sport.  Be careful not to despise the coaching staff’s wisdom and discipline, we don’t want to be fools.  Most of all pray and ask God’s blessing on your life… a healthy respect for Him is the beginning of real knowledge for all of your life.

Bible Reading Plan:
Colossians 4:10-18
Psalms 133-134
I Chronicles 20-22

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Intimidation

I N T I M I D A T I O N
Numbers 13:30-33

Who was the most intimidating opponent you ever faced in competition?  How did you perceive yourself in comparison with his/her abilities and stature?  Did your opponent see you in that same light?  Today’s scripture tells a similar story.


In the Old Testament book of Numbers at chapter 13 and verses 30 through 33 we read, “Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, ‘We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.’  But the men who had gone up with him said, ‘We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.’  And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored.  They said, ‘The land we explored devours those living in it.  All the people there are of great size.  We saw the Nephilim there.  We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”


Caleb was about to lose his patience with his teammates.  They had seen the greatest place they could ever imagine and he was ready to take possession of the place, but his teammates were all afraid. 


Did you hear how they perceived themselves?   They said they saw themselves as grasshoppers in comparison to their opponents.  Worse still, they appeared to be grasshoppers in the eyes of their opponents.


As you compete today, will you see yourselves as Caleb did – fully able to compete with anyone and anywhere?  Or will you see yourself as a grasshopper, one totally out of his league? 


My challenge to you today is to look your opponent directly in the eye and when you see a reflection of yourself in his eyes, see the image of a champion and not that of a grasshopper.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 9:1-17
Colossians 4:1-9
Psalms 132
I Chronicles 17-19

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Rest

R E S T
I John 3:19-20

Have there been moments in your sport career when you found yourself burdened by feelings of guilt or condemnation?  How did you deal with those feelings?  From where do those feelings come?  Today’s scripture offers some answers for how to deal with our hearts.

In John’s first letter at chapter 3 and verses 19 and 20 we read, “This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence whenever our hearts condemn us.  For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.”  John gives us invaluable counsel for handling our condemned hearts.


Those whose hearts have been renewed through relationship with Christ have the power of God at work in them.  Even when their hearts feel condemned because of foolish choices or selfish actions, they can rest in His presence.  He won’t condemn them for their errors.  God is greater than our hearts and knows everything about us.


It’s a lot like a coach who so loves and trusts his/her players that he/she has full confidence that even if they play the worst game of their lives, they still have the favor and acceptance of their coach.  They can rest in his/her presence.  The coach is greater than their hearts and knows they gave their best.


As you prepare to compete today, let your commitment lead you to play your heart out.  Trust your teammates, your coaches and your God to give you the freedom to be your best.


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 8:40-56
Colossians 3:15-25
Psalms 130-131

Friday, July 6, 2018

T H E   G R E A T E S T
Mark 10:42-44

Which of these would most people see as being greater, the driver of the team bus or the star player riding in the back?  Which would appear to be more important, the star athlete or the trainer who hands her a bottle of water?  Who would seem greater, the guest of honor at the team banquet or the person washing the dishes?  We know what most would say, but what do you think?  What would Jesus say?


We can read about Jesus’ value system in the book of Mark at chapter 10 and verses 42 through 44, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.  Not so with you.  Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.”


While totally turning the value system of the world upside down, Jesus said that the great ones are those who serve and that the ones who want to be first must be slaves to the others.  Ouch!  That doesn’t feel good at all.


The problem is that He’s right.  The bus driver is actually more important to the trip than the one riding in the back.  The dishwasher is more important to the dinner than the guest of honor.  The trainer is often more important to the life of a team than one star player.  Each of these people takes on a servant’s role and even resembles a slave at times, in order to further the process for everyone else.


They know what many of you already know:
• Greatness comes through service of your teammates.
• Being first comes at an even higher price – self-sacrifice.


As you compete today, keep in mind that being great will come as you serve your team and that being first is a direct result of putting everyone’s needs ahead of your own.  As you do, you’ll find yourself leading in a way that is most honorable to God and to your teammates.

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 8:26-39
Colossians 3:1-14
I Chronicles 12-14

Thursday, July 5, 2018

F O C U S
Isaiah 26:3

How do you focus your mind on game day?  How do you keep thinking about doing well and not about failure and loss?  How do you keep worry and anxiety from crowding into your mind?  The Bible has a lot to say about that.


In Isaiah's book of prophecy, at chapter 26 and verse 3 it says, "You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You"  What a great promise!  Perfect peace for our minds through steadfast trust in God.


How do we accomplish that?  It's simple really, trust God with all the affairs of your life.  Talk to Him, that's prayer.  Listen to Him, that's Bible reading.  Commit the things that concern you to Him through loving conversation with your teammates. 


When you compete today, rest in the promise that your mind can be at peace.  You'll have the ability to block out the things that cloud your mind and to focus on the game.  Focus and intensity on the floor come from a mind that's uncluttered and at peace.  He keeps our minds in perfect peace through steadfast trust.



Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 8:16-25
Psalms 128
I Chronicles 10-11

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

R E L A T I O N S H I P S
Matthew 22:39

How well do you get along with the people on your team?  How well with the coaching staff?  How well with your family?  Our relationships with people are a life long set of joys, challenges, grief and love.


After Jesus spoke of loving God as the greatest commandment, he said this in Matthew 22 and verse 39, “The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.”


Second only to loving God is Jesus’ command to love people as we love ourselves.  That’s a tall order!!  To love anyone that strongly is a powerful thing.  It’s also rather rare.


Do this today... Express real love toward your teammates through unselfish play.  Show love for your coaches through respect.  Show love to your fans and the officials through honorable actions and speech.  The power of this kind of love transforms people and makes for the best relationships.


Give it all you have today.  Pursue the victory with your last drop of energy.  Play with enthusiasm and vision.  Be a champion.


Bible Reading Plan:
Colossians 2:8-15
Psalms 127
I Chronicles 7-9

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

B O L D N E S S
Proverbs 28:1

When you come into game day, are you confident or fearful?  Do you run to the field with great expectation or run away with great anxiety?  How do we put away our apprehension and take on boldness?


In the book of Proverbs at Chapter 28 and verse 1 it says, "The wicked flees though no one pursues, but the righteous are a bold as a lion."  There are lots of teams that come to play in an opponent's home arena and tremble.  Lots of players from other teams flee though no one is chasing them.  We need not do so.


  It says that the righteous are as bold as a lion.  We'd all like to have that kind of courage and unshakable confidence.  I want you to know that it's attainable through loving God.  That's where being righteous comes from.  Our relationship with God makes us righteous and that results in a quiet, strong confidence in any situation.


Let's compete with a quiet, strong confidence today.  Let's be like lions prowling across the field of competition.  Who knows, maybe the home folks will start running away? 



Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 7:36-50
Colossians 2:1-7
Psalms 126
I Chronicles 5-6

Monday, July 2, 2018

B O N D A G E
John 11:44

Have you ever seen a teammate or friend who seems to be bound by something?  It looks like they have something wrapped around their life, which is just choking the life out of them.  How do we help the situation?  What can be done to free them?  Jesus did that very thing in today’s letter.


We read about Jesus and Lazarus again at John chapter 11 and verse 44, “And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave-clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth.  Jesus said to them, ‘Loose him and let him go.’”


Lazarus was bound with grave-clothes and his face was covered with a cloth.  He had been in the grave for four days, that’s what dead men wear.  But here he comes walking out and Jesus says to loose him and let him go.  Living men don’t wear grave-clothes.


Your teammate or friend may be bound with something equally unfitting.  Bad relationships, drug addictions, defeated attitudes and despair don’t fit this team.  They’re inappropriate for a group like this.  Jesus says the same to us, “Let him loose and let him go.” 


Whatever it is that has your teammate or friend bound, find a way to set him free.  We can help loose the bonds and restore freedom.


As you compete today, loose your teammates to play with greatness by freely encouraging and challenging each one.  Let them go with unselfish team play and powerful focus on the game. 


Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 7:18-35
Colossians 1:15-29
Psalms 125
I Chronicles 3-4

Sunday, July 1, 2018

M O T I V A T I O N
Hebrews 10:24

What is it that best motivates you to compete at your highest level?  Some athletes are motivated by challenge.  Others are moved by the thrill of winning.  Others still are provoked to excellence by the fear of losing.  What is it for you?  We’re certainly not all wired the same.

The writer of the letter to the Hebrews has some insight into motivation and writes about it at chapter 10 and verse 24.  “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works.”  How do your coaches and teammates stir you up to be your best?


There are three important parts of this simple sentence which have direct application to today’s competition:

• Let us consider one another.  This implies that serious thought should be given to each member of the team.  Where motivation is concerned, one size does not fit all.  Let’s give a real effort to understand each member of the team.


• In order to stir up.  What stirs up a great performance in you may not affect me at all and vice versa.  One teammate may require a pat on the back while another may be better motivated by a kick in the pants.  We must consider what will stir up each person most effectively.


• Love and good deeds.  We all know plenty of people who get stirred up and it’s not always toward love and good deeds.  The idea is not to simply stir them up, but to stimulate or to motivate them toward the things that make for the highest level of success for the team.  Let’s be consciously aware of the things that help each one achieve at his or her highest level.



As you compete today, give careful attention to the motivational keys in each of your teammates.  Find a way to press that button that stirs up the best performance possible in each one.  That is part of being a great teammate, coach and competitor.

Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 7:11-17
Colossians 1:1-14
Psalms 123-124
I Chronicles 1-2