Today, two football teams square off in a game viewed by more people on the planet than any other championship. While the focus will be on the players on the field, there is one position that has more impact than any other. He will never catch a pass, throw a block, make a tackle, or score a point. Yet much of the outcome relies on his shoulders. This is the coach.
The coach has four main functions with his team. First, he instructs them. He sets the strategy and makes the important decisions. He designs the plays for his players to execute. He has led them through practices and decided who will play each position.
Second, the coach corrects the team. If someone is not doing their job on the field, he calls them out and helps them change. When the team is behind, he makes adjustments in order to get back in the game. If there is a disagreement between players or a disciplinary problem with a member of the team, it’s the coach’s job to step in and correct the situation.
Third, the coach motivates the team. When a team falls behind, the coach addresses them to instill the confidence to come back and win. When the team is ahead, he keeps them focused in order to maintain the winning momentum. A good coach inspires the team as a whole, while encouraging each player in a way unique to the individual’s personality.
Finally, the coach delegates responsibility amongst his assistants. Some teams have an offensive coordinator, a defensive coordinator, a line coach, a secondary coach, and assistants to the assistants! When a head coach has a good staff of coaches beneath him, his job is much easier and the whole team benefits.
I cannot imagine a successful football team without a coach, yet many people attempt to live their entire lives without listening to others who can instruct them, correct them and motivate them.
As a Christian, God is our head coach. He calls the shots. He wrote the playbook and he instructs us on how to successfully execute each play. He shows us how to be good husbands and fathers. He tells us how to be a true friend, a good employee, and an upright individual.
“Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise” (Proverbs 19:20). When we listen to the instructions from our Heavenly “coach,” we can be victorious in life. When we are out of line, his Spirit convicts us and corrects us. Sometimes we are not necessarily doing something wrong, but we are not quite doing something as well as we can. God’s correction not only helps prevent us from ruining our game, it also enables us do things better than we ever thought possible.
Like a coach, the Lord encourages and inspires us. He motivates us to rise above our circumstances, limitations, and low expectations. Hearing and believing His words gives us the confidence and conviction to overcome the obstacles that stand in our way.
Finally, God uses other people to carry out His will in our lives. An “assistant coach” may be a spouse, parent, friend, pastor or anyone else the Head Coach uses to counsel us. Of course, a true coach will never instruct us to do something that is not in line with the head coach’s plan, so we must exercise discernment. But once we find our coaches, we can develop relationships with these instructors, correctors, and motivators. Through these relationships, we can grow in our position and help the team.
Randy Robison is a host and writer for LIFE Today. Join him every weekday at noon central for LIFE Today Live, on Facebook, YouTube, and Periscope/Twitter at the handle “lifetodaytv”.