“So we do not focus on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
– 2 Corinthians 4:18
One of the great problems in leadership is becoming distracted. How often as coaches do we find ourselves getting off the main road and meandering down rabbit trails? Yet when we’re focused and our vision is clear, we become like a racehorse in the Kentucky Derby with blinders on. We are zoned in! In his book, The Legend of Bear Bryant, Mickey Herskowitz described the famed Alabama football coach’s vision this way. “Coach Bryant could always focus on something with both eyes and still find a third eye to be looking at himself while he was doing it.” How many times could we use a third eye? For Bryant’s players, he was totally focused in an individual way—turning boys into men and doing everything possible to help them get a good education and to one day make a difference in other people’s lives. At the same time, he was focused in a corporate, team-oriented way—to win college football’s national championship. Coach Bryant avoided distractions and he stressed the right priorities—faith, family, education and then winning football games.
Life will often distract us and take us off the main road. Personal illness, losing seasons, the loss of a loved one or the failure to “save” that athlete you poured your heart into are events that can derail us. Our challenge is to see beyond the present and focus on the big picture. Our troubles shouldn’t lessen our faith or shatter our vision. There are even some benefits to going through hard times. They can keep us from becoming prideful. They cause us to look beyond this life. They can give us the opportunity to grow our faith and to share that faith with others. Paul does his best to encourage us by reminding us that this life is not all there is. As a follower of Jesus Christ, we are promised so much more—we are promised life after death! Knowing that we will live forever with God in a place without sin and suffering can help us live above the pain we face in this life.
Heavenly Father, keep me focused today. Help me to keep my eyes on the big picture as I deal with the constant distractions that come my way. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.