“Imitate me as I imitate Christ.” 1 Corinthians 11:1
Most people don’t realize that a coach usually invests the same amount of time preparing for a practice as they do running the very practice for which they have prepared. Early one season, I spent time researching and setting up a new drill that I was excited to share with the team. As we ran this drill at the next practice, I was thankful that I had invested the time when no one was looking to be as prepared as possible.
Fast forward another week, and I noticed another coach was running that very same drill for which I had quietly prepared. I was humored by the fact that we had both introduced the same new drill just one week apart. Interested to know where he had learned of this new drill, I swung over to his field to ask. To my surprise, he told me that he had observed me running it the week before.
God taught me a few things through this interaction. The first is we should always stay sharp. We don’t we want to live life simply relying on what God taught us yesterday. God gave me a hunger to learn something new, and invest some of the hours that people don’t see in my life, for the hours that people do see. He also reminded me that even when we don’t realize it, people are watching us, and, as Christians, they watch us even more closely.
As I thought about this coach teaching his players the drill that he had seen me running, I realized that oftentimes people copy or reproduce what they see in others. In this brief interaction, God reminded me that we need to deepen and develop our faith in Him in private, so that people will know us as a Christian when they examine our life and actions. I cannot be satisfied where I am in my faith, and my knowledge of His word, but each day to press in and grow in my dependence upon Him.
I am thankful for the many ways that God teaches us through sports, and for this simple example that reminds us to stay sharp. In 1 Corinthians, Paul challenges the people of Corinth to “imitate me as I imitate Christ.” As a follower of Jesus, Paul knew he was a worthy example to follow. Today, may God fill you with His strength, as we all desire to imitate Him.
Since 1954, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes has been challenging coaches and athletes on the professional, college, high school, junior high and youth levels to use the powerful medium of athletics to impact the world for Jesus Christ. FCA focuses on serving local communities by equipping, empowering and encouraging people to make a difference for Christ – to see the world impacted for Jesus Christ through the influence of coaches and athletes.
More information can be found at FCA.org.