Do not neglect the gift that is in you…practice these things; be
committed to them, so that your progress may be evident to all.
– 1 Timothy 4:14-15
Can you remember why you decided to become a coach? Many of us grew up playing the games and developed a passion for sports. It seemed only natural to move from being a player to being a coach. Coaching gives us the opportunity to remain a part of the games we love so much. As a young coach, I worked hard to earn the respect of my players and fellow coaches. I must admit however, I selfishly enjoyed the status that goes along with being called “Coach”. Most of all, I liked the feeling that went with winning. As I matured, I began to realize that there was so much more to coaching than status and winning. My entire outlook on coaching changed with the birth of my first son. It was then that I realized other parents love their children as much as I love mine. I began to realize that my responsibilities to my players went much deeper than winning and losing. I was being entrusted with what my mother used to refer to as “precious cargo”. I began to understand that coaching could be a ministry and that I could be a positive influence on the lives of others. I began to get to know my players as people and not just athletes. I listened to their concerns, gave them a voice on the playing field and treated them as I would have wanted a coach to treat my own son. A funny thing happened along the way, I began to enjoy coaching more!
In our scripture, Paul is reminding Timothy to use the gifts that God has given him. He tells Timothy to practice them and to be committed to them. The more we practice our gifts of coaching, the better we will get. The more committed we are to our gifts of coaching, the more we will understand that it is not about what we get. It’s all about how we can best serve God through the gifts He has given us and positively impact the lives of those we serve. From time to time we need to stop and ask ourselves a very important question. Why do I coach? Is it for selfish reasons or am I responding to God’s call to use the gifts He has given me?
Thank You Father for giving me the gift of coaching. Thank You for helping me understand that when I use that gift to serve You and others, You will bless me abundantly. Amen.