For it is God’s will that you, by doing good, silence the ignorance of foolish people.— 1 Peter 2:15
Coaches cannot make everyone happy. We hear cruel and untrue remarks shouted at us from the stands every game day. “You’re not playing the right person—you don’t know what you’re doing—I could coach better than that in my sleep!” It is easy to dwell on these comments, respond to them with anger, or lash back at shouters in the stands. The difficult task is to respond as Jesus would respond, and we learn how to do that from his example in Scripture. Responding to ignorance is even more difficult when we are criticized for seeking to live godly lives. The Apostle Peter teaches us that actions speak louder than words when it comes to bearing witness before those who ridicule us.
We exhibit Christlike behavior in our coaching and in every area of life when we seek to demonstrate excellence in our leadership and a desire to do all for the glory of God. True leadership begins by example. Jesus led by example, and one example he set occurred on the cross when He prayed, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Lk 23:34). Jesus was gracious and merciful even in death. Peter also described the blessings of responding to our critics in love. He wrote, “For it brings favor if, because of conscience toward God, someone endures grief from suffering unjustly” (1 Pt 2:19). As coaches who bear the name of Christ, let’s be sure our personal example is like His.
1. How do you typically respond to those who criticize you?
2. How can Jesus’ example help you with coaching and every other area of life?
Extra Reading: 1 Peter 2:13–25
Lord, I pray that You will be with me during moments in my life when I am tempted to lash out and not be the role model I should be. Walk with me each day, reminding me of the way You would have me act and of the promise that Your Word will not return void. Help me be a Christian coach and servant who will influence others to follow life with Christ. Thank You, God, for the many blessings You bestow upon me each day. Amen.