Athlete, This is How to Win Daily
Colossians 4:5 (NIV)
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.
If you want to win consistently, managing time and score matters. Those that don’t certainly risk losing.
If you want to win in human relationships consistently, practicing Colossians 4:5 matters. Those who don’t certainly risk failure too.
To understand this verse, we must answer three questions.
WHO ARE THE “OUTSIDERS”?
- Outsiders are anyone beyond you, those who don’t really know or understand you yet.
- Outsiders are those who are not yet part of the family of God. They likely know about God, but they don’t yet know Him personally. His love, truth and grace has not yet penetrated and captured their hearts.
They sit on the “visitors” bench, playing the same game but not on the same team. They may not join God’s team until they see His love and life playing out in you.
“ACTING WISELY” MEANS WHAT?
- Be Considerate — Treat others compassionately and carefully, like you would a blind man in your presence. Understand before being understood. Practice the Golden Rule (“Do to others as you would have them do to you“ Luke 6:31). The Golden Rule needs tons of playing time in our lives, in our world.
- Guard Well — Protect truth. There are wolves out there. Treat truth like Denzel Washington in his movie, ”The Book of Eli.” Know it so well. Defend and deliver it. No compromise. Humbly remember that truth stands above (prevailing) opinion (2 Timothy 2:15).
- Love Well — Gift people with your best thoughts, not your brutal words. Tell those whom you love that you do while you can. Only speak truth in love. Otherwise, it won’t land. This is the wise way to go.
WHAT DOES “OPPORTUNISTIC LIVING” LOOK LIKE?
- Look to Score — In boxing, the time to punch is the moment your opponent drops his gloves. In football, red zone and pick-six scoring is key. In basketball, points off turnovers are huge. Be ready to score relationally too.
That means taking initiative in the power of the Holy Spirit and leaving the results to God.
That means being others-focused and committed to selfless service all the time, just like Jesus.
- Create Turnovers — Read the passer’s eyes. Others will tell you when and where they’re delivering the ball. Their eyes give it away. Their faces, body language and even their hearts will too.
So read situations well. Work on your emotional intelligence. Scan for seizable moments and take them. They appear all the time.
- Manage the Clock — Always be aware of time and score. Scoreboards so often dictate what strategies must follow. Bring awareness of appropriate strategy to human interactions too. Those that manage life’s scoreboard get wins too.
Reflect: What do daily wins look like for you? Which phrase caught your attention and needs more playing time? Does Colossians 4:5 pack some pop and bring benefit to you? (If so, maybe you should memorize it.)
A prayer to consider: LORD, help me know my audience, act wisely and make the most of every opportunity. I want victory beyond competition every day.
That means I need your power to understand before being understood, to grow my emotional intelligence — not just my intellectual capacity, to look to score — not just play, to seize moments — not just have them, to manage my clock, be vigilant, love well, defend truth, be considerate and practice the Golden Rule.
Hear my prayer for these daily wins, I pray. Amen.