We do not enjoy being disciplined. It is painful at the time, but later, after we have learned from it, we have peace, because we start living in the right way. You have become weak, so make yourselves strong again. Keep on the right path, so the weak will not stumble but rather be strengthened. (Hebrews 12:11-13)
When have you experienced a good coach? Why do you believe He or she was a good coach?
What do you think qualifies a coach to be a poor, ineffective coach?
Whose life are you currently investing in, and who are you allowing to invest in you?
There’s not much use to have a coach you don’t believe in or listen to. The point of having a coach is giving someone else authority in your training. You want someone who knows more than you do in terms of training and preparation. You don’t want to have to manage all the details; instead, when you have someone who sees and understands the big picture, you can submit to authority, follow instructions, and get results. You won’t always get every single result you expect or want; after all, there are always going to be a few factors that are out of your control…and out of the control of even your coach. But a good coach will certainly lead, even launch, you toward your goals. Not every coach is the best choice for each trainee. In order to get the right fit, we have to know our goals. We have to know our reasons for training and choose the best coach we can. We need a coach who knows more than we know—someone who seems to know us even better than we do.
Of course, God is the best coach. In fact, when it comes to our faith and spiritual growth, He’s really the only one we should consider for the role. He will bring others into our lives who will encourage us along the journey, but He is there from beginning to end. He’s there for the early mornings and late nights and everything in between. He’s there for the thrill of victory and agony of defeat. He knows when we’re hurting, when we need a break, when we need a gentle (or not so gentle) nudge. He knows it all. So…why do we try to coach ourselves, thinking we know ourselves best so we’ll do the best job? Humble yourself. Let Him coach. Ask Him. Follow Him. With each response, give Him an enthusiastic, resolute, “Yes, God.” Even when you don’t see or understand the results or the path you’re taking, He will never, ever lead you wrong.
Invest in someone’s life today. Contact someone you have been encouraging and take the next step. Watch for someone you don’t have much of a relationship with yet but plant the seeds of encouragement with a smile and brief word. Appreciate when others encourage you—with a word, kind deed, or smile. Write a note to someone who has encouraged you in the past. And thank God for all the coaching He’s given you—the encouragement and the challenges.