“I will give them one heart and one way,
that they may fear me forever, for their own good
and the good of their children after them.”
– Jeremiah 32:39 (ESV)
It had been a demanding practice! Stamina and desire were being tested for both athletes and coaches. During a much deserved and much needed water break, I found myself sitting next to one of our most talented athletes. This athlete had been challenged repeatedly to push through complacency and the willingness to settle for less than her best effort. When told she could do better, I knew she believed she was the best athlete on the court. With more than a little frustration, the words exploded out of my mouth and my heart, “How do you want to be coached?” What I wanted to know was did she want to reach her full potential? Was she willing to work for it? Was she willing to pay the price? It wasn’t personal, I liked her and believed in her. I knew she was capable of so much more.
Rethinking this story, I can almost hear God asking me the same questions. “How do you want to be coached?” God made each one of us in a wonderful and unique way. We are one of a kind. We have God-given gifts and talents that all too often are not used to their full potential. We settle for less than our best effort and fail to strive for excellence in all that we do. We compare ourselves to others and are convinced that our efforts are better than most. I can almost feel God’s hurt and disappointment as He says, “I created you for so much more!” God doesn’t want us to settle for anything. He wants our best! He wants us to love Him and to love others with every fiber of our body, mind and soul. To strive for that goal, we must trust Him and obey His commands. Yes, it will be hard, but the rewards are beyond anything we can imagine.
Heavenly Father, coach me up today. Give me a heart of obedience and an unwavering trust in Your promises. Amen.