Wednesday Wisdom 🙂
Inspiration from today’s Wednesday Wisdom comes from the Gospel of Luke 16:10
“If you are faithful in the little things, you will be faithful in the large ones…”
This week my favorite brunette and my favorite blonde cowgirl will compete at the Nebraska State Track Meet. While I am incredibly proud of both of their accomplishments, the joy that fills my heart mostly stems from the knowledge that they will get to continue as track teammates for one more competition.
One more opportunity to learn to compete with grace.
Twenty one years ago, when I held my first “coaching job”, I clung tightly to the competitive spirit that marked my own athletic career. I focused on teaching all of the little things that help to bring athletic success:
- Hard Work
- Dedicated passion for the sport
- Developing the competitive mental mindset that allows for physical success on game day
Coming out of an athletic career where I trained for up to 5 hours per day, I was well versed in what it took to be both mentally tough and physically strong. I was faithful in the little things, and found success both in the pool and on the Cross Country Course. I understood the what but, as I matured, I struggled with the why.
Although I did the little things correctly, I never truly comprehended that I was traveling God’s journey. As a result, on race day I lacked the confidence and peace that came from a strong faith. I didn’t understand that when I accepted God’s call, He traveled the competitive journey with me. It was my job to work hard and compete with passion to bring Him honor — It was God’s job to carry me through the stress of competition that sometimes threatened to overcome the peace in my heart.
I never learned to give it to Him.
As a result, my fear was often stronger than my faith and I never truly competed with grace.
When I think of what I most want my girls to experience in athletics, it is the art of competing with grace. I believe that faith is a muscle. It strengthens as we use it. It requires trust, obedience, and intentionality to grow. I never really understood that until I ran a half marathon last fall. I competed in thousands of races over more than three decades before I finally got it right.
The first step is faithfully doing all of the little things, but it doesn’t end there — that is simply the beginning.
Blessings follow obedience
Megan asked me recently how I know when I pack my faith to compete with grace. For me, the answer lies in my heart. When I step up to compete with grace, the intensity of competition blends with a peaceful heart as I know that I am where God called me to be.
There is confidence that comes from obedience – From knowing that you are fulfilling God’s purpose with your actions.
That is how you compete with grace.
As both a mom and a coach, I find that I now live by a new definition of mentoring with my athletes. While my teaching still includes faithfully putting in the work and doing the little things, perhaps the most important lesson that I teach my kids is to believe that their competitive journey is a part of God’s calling for their lives.
Our job is to work hard and move our bodies with passion. God provides the guidance that leads to peace and confidence. When we learn to trust — to obey — to lean — it is then that we intentionally build the muscle of faith that brings us success on the journey.