1 Timothy 4:8
For athletic training only benefits you for a short season, but righteousness brings lasting benefit in everything; for righteousness contains the promise of life, for time and eternity.
Practice makes perfect is a saying that any athlete would know. Doing something over and over, getting better and better with each rep is always the goal. When practicing something on a repetitive basis, you develop natural reactions and responses without even thinking about what to do or how to do it. Your constant training takes over and the result of consistent practice prevails. There are studies and books that validate the fact that it takes 10,000 repetitions to become an expert at anything in life, including sports. Just think about how this also stands true as we practice daily to become more fruitful as a Christian. In 1 Timothy 4:8 Paul speaks of the importance we place on training for success in a short athletic season, but righteousness in Christ brings lasting benefits. Living in righteousness contains the promise of life, for this life and for eternity.
Ultimately, we should all be chasing the championship in life as a Believer. I have loved the fact that having our kids in sports has helped us teach and train them parallel life lessons as they practice to be great in competition. We should all be raising our kids to practice being champions on the field of life too. Raising athletes gives them constant reminders of how hard it is to become great at anything, the grit and determination never to quit. Teaching them how to win well and lose lousily. Training them to never whine as they were growing through feelings, mistreatments, judgments or letdowns has been imperative. Always be set apart and not just do what everyone else does, but what others are not willing to do to become the best.
Actually, as I write this, I have two of my three boys hanging up their cleats from competition for the rest of their life. After having their lives dedicated to practicing to become the very best football player they could possibly become. Both of them played ball at the next level in college. Gavin 5 years due to an injury and Cam, my oldest played 2 more years in the CFL. The sport has controlled most of their focus on life. Weekly work out routines including regular season practice, offseason workouts, extra specialty speed, and agility training, reading and listening to mindset teachings, the best nutrition, the best diets for weight goals and I could go on and on about the best practices they chose as extreme athletes. Yes, I would call them extreme in their effort to become great, but isn’t that what we want to be in life as a believer? Extremely great at exemplifying the practices of a winning in life Christian? I would hope you all say yes! See, now that my boys won’t be playing the game of football anymore, they still have the life lessons through football that have helped them become champions off the field too. The mindset, work ethic, leadership, and passion has all intertwined in who they are as great young men, not just great athletes. They will perform in life, just as well as they performed on the field and even become better as they continue practicing each and every day.
So, as a Christian desiring to become great, we must understand that it’s all in the training. What we do to pray consistently, read the word of God, and live as Jesus lived is what matters most. Practice daily, because the quality of your practice determines the caliber of your performance. Although you are not truly “performing”, if you are a Christian you are live streaming Jesus everywhere you go. Are people attracted to your life “streaming”?