Christ Centered Athlete - An athlete who exemplifies a Christ in everything they do - on or off the court.
One of the most difficult balances in life is the pursuit of our dreams while keeping Christ in first place. An excellent Christ Centered athlete is still required to dedicate an exorbitant amount of time training to achieve their career goals, and many times that will be disproportionate to the time they spend growing in Christ. Both are requirements for a player’s success, which makes it difficult for an athlete to balance and to also ensure that Christ does not take 2nd place in their life
From the beginning of time, God requires that He be #1 in our life. It is the first of the Ten Commandments, and reiterated in many Old & New Testament scriptures. Many times God’s children, the Israelites, would worship the god’s of other people and suffer greatly because of it. The Bible is also filled with God blessing His children when He was #1 in their life.
In today’s culture, there are many things that vie for our time, talent, and money. This creates an opportunity for many things to take precedent over God. A December 2015 study published in Time Magazine showed that the average American checked their phone 46 times per day. Those between the ages of 18-24 checked their phone an average of 74 times per day. That means someone is checking their once every 19.5 minutes! A 2014 study conducted by the Barna Group found that only 15% of Bible reading adults read the Bible daily. This study also revealed the number one reason for a decrease in Bible engagement was because people felt they did not have time to read the Bible. When you consider these facts and the required amount of time for an athlete to achieve their athletic dreams, then it’s easy to see how God takes a back-seat in the life of a player.
So how does the athlete ensure the God maintains a #1 place in their life? Matthew 6:33 provides the answer. When an athlete seeks first the Kingdom of God, then everything else will be taken care of. Psalms 37: 4-5 says “Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and He shall bring it to pass.” Make a commitment each and every day that your relationship with Christ will come before anything you do, and then follow through on it. Commit your training and preparation to the Lord. Talk to the Lord on a regular basis throughout your day. Make it a goal to memorize scripture or to write down what God is teaching you every day. Give God, and only God, all of the glory for your achievements. That’s how the athlete ensures that God stays #1 in your life.
To be a successful Godly leader, always remember that He will give you the desires of your heart, when you make desiring His heart your first priority.
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