A Note to Coaches: Work Habits

What are Work Habits for an Athlete?

Our work habits are determined by our goals and defined by what we do to obtain them.  Often, though, we are unaware of the subconscious goals we’ve formulated, but those goals are evident in our behaviors.  Athletes often pursue the goal of winning a championship, gaining   recognition, or playing collegiately or professionally.  Some seek     acceptance, desiring to be one of a popular or honored circle of people; the goal of excelling athletically becomes a means toward that end.

Apart from Christ, our goals often lead us into enmity, discord, jealousy, anger, disputes, and selfishness.  A look across the landscape of recent athletic history reveals many of these evils embodied.  We sometimes call them by names that are socially acceptable — competitiveness, drive, intensity; and, thus, we often excuse evil behavior as good.

Scripture describes the goals and work habits of Christ, which give  better direction to our own efforts.  In John 17:4, Jesus said to His    Father, “I have brought You glory on earth by completing the work You gave me to do.”  Further, in John 19:30, Jesus (when came to the end of His suffering) said, “It is finished.”  The accounts of Matthew and Mark say He cried out with a loud voice.  This is the exclamation of victory: It is finished!  I have completed the work that you gave me to do!  His goal was to complete the work that God gave Him to do.

Hebrews 12:2-3 tells us that He, “for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”  Our motivation and ability to attain our goals are only possible because of Christ; until we base our own goals upon His goals and begin to pursue our work according to His example, our work habits will lead to ultimate failure.

Therefore, friends, let us repent of sinful work habits — those which find their motivation in personal advancement or in the primary desire to gain championships.  Romans 8:29 motivates us with God’s intent that we are “to be conformed to the image of His Son”.  As coaches of athletes, we should endeavor to live every area of our lives for that   purpose — and to guide our athletes to that same goal.  Let your work habits, then, conform you and your team to the likeness of Jesus.


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