Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Daily gold ...
That may not be the case.
Instead, they might be watching an athlete having another day at the office.
Many Olympic athletes have written and spoken about how they handle the pressure and nerves of major competitions, including the Olympics. Most of these athletes have been training and competing in their sport for the bigger part of their lifetime. What many of them have learned about competing is that winning comes from what they do every day in their training.
Elite athletes train and compete throughout the year to work their way up the rankings to be able to compete in something as grand as the Olympics. But for many, they approach their Olympic performances much like they do the other performances they have competed in: going out and executing well what they do most days of the week.
For example, one diver noted his training routine includes him making 25,000 dives in one year. That is the equivalent of making more than 68 dives per day, every day of the year!
If you think about that, it means these Olympians aren't pushing themselves at a championship level for just a moment during games held once every four years; it means that on many days throughout the year, they are pushing themselves at a champion level. So, when they find themselves in competition, they turn to do what they do every day, as well as they can. If they do that, they usually do very well.
How about the rest of us?
We hear "rah-rah" talk about the rest of us being "champions" at the things we do: in our jobs, in our homes, in our relationships, in our ministries, in our churches. We talk about being champions and "crushing it," but are we pushing our training, our execution, our "performances" anywhere near the level of commitment, dedication, and excellence these Olympic champions (with or without medals) do?
They literally are pushing themselves for the gold most days.
The Apostle Paul wrote of living as a champion in his letter to the Corinthians:
"24 Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! 25 All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified," 1 Corinthians 9:24-27.
How about you? Do you work as hard for your boss? In your marriage? As a parent? In your relationships? In service to others? Could you call yourself a "champion for God?"